~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Tuesday July 3, 2007!A service of Midwest Farm Shows
-- Happy Birthday America!!!
-- Wheat Harvest- the score is tied 59-59!
-- More Sprouting Being Reported as Wheat Harvest Remains Bogged Down
-- Request to be Made to Sell Lower Germination Wheat Seed This Fall
-- Now is the time to Pregnancy Check those Replacement Heifers
-- Coalition Wants U.S. - Korea Free Trade Agreement.
-- Oregon Bans Gestation Crates for Sows
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. Our email this morning is a service of Midwest Farm Shows, featuring the recently concluded Southern Plains Farm Show in Oklahoma City, as well as the Tulsa Farm Show held each December. Check out details of both of these exciting shows at the official website of Midwest Farm Shows by clicking here.
If you have received this by someone forwarding it to you, you are welcome to subscribe and get this weekday update sent to you directly by clicking here.
Happy Birthday America!!!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Our great country is celebrting its 231st birthday here in 2007- and we will be on a holiday schedule for the next couple of days. We will NOT have an email tomorrow- and we will do a "lite" version on Thursday- probably just two or three stories that surface over the next day or so- if we receive any harvest info between now and Thursday morning- we will most certainty pass that along to you. We plan on writing a regular email farm and ranch news update on Friday morning to end this holiday interrupted week.
If you need to market livestock, MAKE SURE you have checked with the auction barn you normally work with to check on their holiday schedule- many of them are off this week for the Fourth of July celebration.
Wheat Harvest- the score is tied 59-59!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The folks that produce the weekly crop weather updates report that Oklahoma and Kansas are at the same percentage of wheat harvest completion as we begin July. Both states have a 59% complete on harvest with the states headed in different directions. Kansas made excellent progress this past week, jumping from 20% to 59% in one week, while Oklahoma saw the number of acres cut reduced because of the daily rains that have washed away most of the optimism for the wheat that remains in the fields of our state. We saw harvest progress creep from 52% to 59% complete from the previous week- last year at this point we were essentially done and the five year average is 96% by this date.
Beyond the wheat harvest- the rains have also disrupted spring planting for several crops- especially milo and soybeans. We are past where these crops can be planted- by and large, with only half of the soybeans actually planted that we expected to go into the ground in 2007. Grain Sorghum planting moved from 65% done to 66% done from week to week. The condition of the crops we were able to have in the ground before the rains came and came and came is mostly good, with 79% of the Oklahoma corn crop rated in good to excellent condition.
Our pasture and range conditions continue to move higher with the abundant moisture working its magic in a positive way. Eighty one percent of the state's pastures are rated in good to excellent condition. The writer of the weekly crop update does point out that the saturated condition of our ground is a problem with earthen dams- as many have weakened or even failed because of the runoff.
More Sprouting Being Reported as Wheat Harvest Remains Bogged Down
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Another day and another set of pictures from folks who are seeing the fully ripe heads of wheat sprout as we wait to get dry enough to try harvesting a few acres to see what is left of this 2007 wheat crop in the fields.
We have linked one of those shots provided from a producer in north central Oklahoma- they indicate that this is the variety Duster and it looks like it wants to grow a second crop right there out of the head!
You can take a look at this by going to our web site via the link provided below- we are always looking for any updates that you might provide about the condition of the wheat left in your fields and what you might be hearing from insurance adjusters. Drop us an email.
Request to be Made to Sell Lower Germination Wheat Seed This Fall
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Joe Neal Hampton tells us that the Oklahoma Grain and Feed Association, Oklahoma Agribusiness Retailers Association, and Oklahoma Seed Trade Association is going to ask the Oklahoma State Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry to "waive" the part of the Oklahoma Seed Law requirement for wheat seed for this year that requires a minimum of 70% germination before it can be legally sold.
If the request is granted, the seed dealer will still have to provide a germination test on the particular lot of seed offered for sale. At that point, the farmer will have to determine if he wants to buy and use that lower percentage wheat seed. The experts tell us that as long as you compensate with enough seed per acre, based on that germination rate, that should not be a problem. It appears that this request is in anticipation of having limited supplies of higher quality wheat in the pipeline that would meet current standards for germination because of the heavy rain damage that comes on top of the freeze and disease problems we were already facing.
We also asked Joe Neal his thoughts on the financial impact of the 2007 crop disaster on the well being of local agribusinesses- especially grain elevators. He believes it will be significant, and we hope to put the pieces together on that aspect of this 2007 harvest to report to you in the near future.
Now is the time to Pregnancy Check those Replacement Heifers
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~OSU's Mama Cow Specialist Dr. Glen Selk says that now is an excellent time to pregnancy check any replacement heifers that have just gone through the spring breeding season. Selk says there are several reasons why it's better to know she is carrying a calf rather than allow that to be a surprise this coming winter.
If you check now and decide to cull her from the herd, you save all the cost of carrying her on pasture and supplemental feeding for months and months. And Dr. Selk says an even bigger kicker is that if you delay on pulling her from the herd, you push her from being able to be fed out and sold as a slaughter heifer and likely getting a top feedlot animal price. If you snooze, you lose because she will likely turn into a "heiferette" and may only bring cull cow prices, easily twenty cents per pound cheaper at market.
Glen talks with us about this management issue on today's edition of the Beef Buzz on the Radio Oklahoma Network- heard on radio stations across the state. And, we have added it to our archive of Buzzes that you can check out- and we have linked to it directly if you want to hear the complete story about why this makes good dollars and sense for your cow herd.
Coalition Wants U.S. - Korea Free Trade Agreement.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~An Agriculture Coalition of 34 organizations has sent a letter to Congress urging lawmakers to approve the Korea - U.S. Free Trade Agreement. In the letter the groups say - Korea is one of the most highly protected agricultural markets in the world. Its average agricultural tariff rate is 52 percent - with tariffs on some products ranging well over 100 percent. The groups say - we have in our grasp the opportunity to gain the elimination of these restrictions on products from the United States. The groups add that "We cannot afford to fumble it away."
The letter states - this is a significant achievement - one which will provide large dividends to America's farmers, ranchers and agribusiness for decades to come. If the agreement is enacted, nearly 2 billion dollars in current U.S. farm exports to Korea will become duty-free, immediately upon entry into force of the agreement, with most of the tariffs and tariff-rate quotas on remaining trade phased out over the first ten years of the agreement.
The writers of the Coalition's letter state that - unlike FTAs that Congress has passed with food and agriculture exporting nations such as Australia and Chile, U.S. farmers, ranchers and agribusiness will be facing virtually no new competition as a result of this FTA. Korea is a small exporter of food and agriculture products; mainly fish and specialty food items. U.S. tariffs on food and agriculture products from Korea are already very low or zero.
Oregon Bans Gestation Crates for Sows
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The state of Oregon has now joined the growing list of states to bar the use of gestation crates. Some say the crates are an inhumane method of confining animals on factory farms. Specifically, the new law will bar the use of two-foot by seven-foot gestation crates that confine breeding sows in the pig industry. Oregon is the first state in the country to ban the use of gestation crates by action of a state legislature. Arizona and Florida have done so through voter ballot initiatives.
The Oregon measure doesn't take effect until 2013, giving the state's farmers six years to transition - if they need to. There are approximately 4,000 breeding sows in Oregon.
Our thanks to Midwest Farm Shows for their support of our daily Farm News Update. Go to their website at the link at the top of today's email and make plans to be an exhibitor at either the Tulsa Farm Show this December or the Southern Plains Farm Show next spring!
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