~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Wednesday November 7, 2007!A service of National Livestock Credit Corporation, American Farmers and Ranchers & Midwest Farm Shows
-- Senator Reid "Filled Up the Tree" and the Senate Farm Bill Debate is Sidelined.
-- Bush Administration Offers Their Laundry List of Problems with the Senate Ag Committee Bill
-- Seaboard Decides Not to Build New Processing Plant- But Is Updating Guymon Plant.
-- POP Wants Reports of Where Canola was Planted This Fall
-- Could it be Chairman Lucas?
-- Farm Bureau To Gather This Weekend for a multi county "Food Fight"
-- Colder Weather This Week a Reminder to Shift Nutritional Gears with your Livestock- Including Horses!
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. American Farmers and Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company is a regular sponsor of our daily update- click here to go to their NEW AFR web site to learn more about their efforts to serve rural America!!!
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Senator Reid "Filled Up the Tree" and the Senate Farm Bill Debate is Sidelined.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Just when it looked like the farm bill debate was moving forward- Democrats and Republicans fell out over which amendments have relevance in the farm bill debate and as a result will be allowed during the floor debate in the days ahead. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid wants to limit the amendments based on his definition of relevance- but Republican Senators have placed an objection to that- and the process came crashing to earth.
Reid used a legislative strategy that some people call "filling up the tree" as he offered several amendments in rapid fire Tuesday morning- getting those amendments in place ahead of any others. The number one amendment at the top of his tree is the Hard Cap Payment Limits touted by Senators Dorgan and Grassley which would drop the payment max to $250,000 annually and tighten up how that is figured.
The Senate Farm Bill is off the radar of the Senate today- and it's unknown if leadership can reconcile the amendment rift in time for floor action on Thursday or Friday of this week. We do have an audio overview of some of the comments from yesterday from lawmakers we have produced- click on the link below to take a listen.
Bush Administration Offers Their Laundry List of Problems with the Senate Ag Committee Bill
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Statement of Administration Policy has been delivered to Capitol Hill by the Executive Office of the President. The statement points to where the Administration sees problems in the Senate's farm bill. These problems include: federal support payments to farmers in the wealthiest two percent of American tax filers; the conservation program does not reflect wise stewardship of taxpayer dollars; and increasing commodity price supports distort the market-place.
The Bush Administration says the final farm bill must:
We have a link to this Statement on our Farm Bill Page of our website- and we will be updating that page as new information develops on the Farm Bill debate- check back from time to time to see what is new. The link to that page is below- then scroll to the White House link we have provided for the State of Principles.
Seaboard Decides Not to Build New Processing Plant- But Is Updating Guymon Plant.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Shawnee Mission, Kan.-based Seaboard Corp. said it has postponed construction on a new $45 million further processing plant for bacon production and may look to buy an existing facility instead. Construction on the new plant was set to begin in the second half of 2007, but has been pushed back, with no related capital expenditures now expected in 2007. "In addition, other alternatives to construction may be considered for this project including the acquisition of an existing facility," the company said in a financial filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Seaboard also said it plans to spend $9.2 million to improve existing hog facilities and upgrade its Guymon processing plant and is currently constructing additional hog finishing space to expand its live production facilities to support the Guymon plant.
Also in Guymon, Seaboard is constructing a $40 million processing plant to produce biodiesel to be sold to a third party, which will be produced from by- products including from the Guymon plant. They expect a combination of animal fat and vegetable oils will be used in the plant designed to produce thirty million gallons of biodiesel annually. Construction of that facility began in 2006- with the opening of the plant expected in 2008.
POP Wants Reports of Where Canola was Planted This Fall
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Gene Neuens, the Executive Director of Plains Oilseed Producers Cooperative- or POP- has written a brief newsletter that congratulates producers who have been successful in planting Canola here in 2007 for the 2008 harvest. He writes "It's November and most of the Winter Canola has been planted. I have visited some winter canola fields and the stand looks very good. I believe that we have the start of a good 2008 harvest. Canola has been planted from central Kansas, to Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Texas. This will give future producers a chance to see Winter Canola growing in their area. In my next newsletter I will have a map that shows Winter Canola production areas so that new producers can watch it grow."
We did have weather problems, what's new, dry weather and then it got too wet. Also with the price of wheat at record levels, producers went back with what was familiar to them. With canola oilseed prices at $7.50 a bushel, new crop, we can still compete favorable with wheat priced at $6.50 a bushel, new crop. Our price is posted on our web site - we have it linked below. There is a sample copy of the contract for forward contracting canola attached to the POP web site. And, you can give Brandon Winters a call at PCOM about contracting 2008 Canola (405-232-7555).
Neuens says that Producers Cooperative Oil Mill is now in the process of converting their plant to be able to crush the 2008 Canola crop. Neuens adds "They have made the commitment to become the Southern Great Plains Canola processing plant. PCOM needs you to grow Winter Canola. PCOM's web site has information about the company and also shows the price of canola for next harvest."
Could it be Chairman Lucas?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's Third District Congressman Frank Lucas is in a position to move higher in the Republican pecking order of the House Ag Committee after the 2008 elections- assuming he runs and wins his seat for another term. In fact, he could become the top Republican on the Committee in 2009.
He is currently number three on the Seniority list, with the lawmaker just ahead of him, Terry Everett of Alabama, having announced that he will not seek reelection in 2008 and will be retiring from Congress. That slips Lucas up to the number two slot- and based on rules that the Republicans established for themselves in 1995- you get six years as the Chairman or Top Ranking Member of a Committee- and Virginian Bob Goodlatte will be at that limit at the end of 2008. Frank Lucas is right there in the right spot at the right time as he could move to the top Republican rung on the House Ag Committee ladder.
We asked Congressman Lucas about this earlier this week- and we have his comments linked below. While the chances that he could be in the majority in 2009 is remote- depending on how people perceive Congress and the White House in the next few years- 2010 might see Republican fortunes improve- and Lucas could be there to lead the Committee as we write the next farm bill in 2012- as long as Oklahoma continues to support his return to Washington every other year.
Farm Bureau To Gather This Weekend for a multi county "Food Fight"
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The 66th Annual Convention of the Oklahoma Farm Bureau may involve a major "Food Fight" as County Farm Bureaus all will be competing to see which county can bring the most cans of food and donations to be given to the Regional Food Banks in the State. The competition will last through the end of the Convention- with the winning County to receive a trip for two to the Congressional Action Tour in Washington, D.C. in March 2008.
Beyond the "Farmers Fighting Hunger" campaign, Farm Bureau delegates will work on policy up from the grassroots on Saturday morning- then will vote for a new President Saturday afternoon. Steve Kouplen is stepping down after eight years as President because of term limits. Vying for the post is Mike Spradling of Tulsa County and Bob Drake of Murray County.
Several stories on what will be happening at their annual meeting are showcased on the Oklahoma Farm Bureau web site- and we have that linked for you below.
Colder Weather This Week a Reminder to Shift Nutritional Gears with your Livestock- Including Horses!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Horses need more feed to replace energy loss brought about by harsher weather conditions as the temperature turns colder, and that means equine owners need to take steps to ensure colic does not become a problem. Equine owners must practice sound management in altering their animals' rations if problems with colic or founder are to be avoided, said Dave Freeman, Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service equine specialist. "Concentrate composition and amounts should be increased gradually over a period of several days, especially if the horses are already consuming large quantities of grain," Freeman said.
Many concentrates - grain mixes - will have significant levels of soluble carbohydrates, which are efficient providers of energy. "However, eating too much of these compounds in one meal is a significant contributor to the frequency of colic and founder in horses," he said. One general guideline is to limit grain feedings to maximum single meal intakes of around 5 pounds per 1,000 pounds of body weight. "Of course, some concentrates are less energy dense than others, so following recommended intake levels on feed bags is a good practice," Freeman said.
Freeman said horses may suffer from colic if ration changes occur too
rapidly. A horse's anatomy makes the animal very susceptible to colic, an
acute abdominal pain caused by various abnormal conditions. Nutritional
causes of colic include mismanagement such as abrupt changes in diet,
consumption of moldy grain or hay, overfeeding energy at a single feeding
or improper digestion and impact of nutrients brought on by ineffective
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