~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Monday May 5, 2008!A service of The Oklahoma Bioenergy Center, Midwest Farm Shows and American Farmers & Ranchers.
-- Could This Be the Week We Get a Farm Bill???
-- 57th National Land Judging Contest Happens Wednesday!
-- Wheat Tours and Crop Forecasts All on Tap This Week!
-- Both Sides on the Ethanol Debate Continue to Chew Back and Forth...
-- Estate Planning Webcast- Sponsored by the Pork Checkoff- Available Live Tomorrow.
-- Korean Government Official Tells National TV Audience- US Beef Is Safe!
-- Red Hills Hereford Grassland Dispersion Sale Set for May 17.
-- Checking the Markets...
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. We are proud to have American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company as 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!
Our email this morning is also a service of Midwest Farm Shows,
producer of the Tulsa Farm Show that is held each December, as well as the
just concluded Southern Plains Farm Show in Oklahoma City. Check out
details of both of these exciting shows at the official website of Midwest
Farm Shows by clicking here.
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Could This Be the Week We Get a Farm Bill???
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Even though the Chairman of the Senate-House Farm Bill Conference Committee, Tom Harkin, says - we are basically done - eight issues remain to be resolved. These issues include: adjusted gross income limits, ending efforts to privatize food stamps, and assessing dairy promotion import duties. Then the Congressional Budget Office has to score the entire bill. Those eight areas will be discussed during the next conference committee meeting, set for sometime after 1:00 pm Tuesday.
Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Chuck Conner continues to carry the torch for the President, saying - the president wants to sign a farm bill that meets his criteria. He says - if sent to him without meeting his criteria, he would be forced to veto the bill. The President wants a farm bill that reduces cost and implements real reform. Many supporters in Congress hope they have enough votes to override any Presidential veto.
Meanwhile- The Center for Rural Affairs says the data is conclusive: farm bill reform is phony reform. The Center points to the Conference Committee agreement that includes two ostensible reforms. It attributes farm payments received through entities to the payment limitation of the ultimate beneficiary. And it adjusts the means test, which denies payments to certain high income recipients. The Center says - the impact of those provisions is outweighed by the 25% increase in the direct payment limit to 100-thousand dollars for married couples.
57th National Land Judging Contest Happens Wednesday!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Approximately 1,000 teenagers from across the nation will come to Oklahoma City this week, as they have the first week of May for over five decades, to compete in a national educational competition. The National Land and Range Judging Contest, a three-day event that stresses soil and plant science, land management and conservation, begins for the 57th year today. After two days of opportunity to visit practice sites, the event will culminate on Wednesday, May 7, with the contest at a site whose location is kept secret until that morning, followed in the evening by an awards banquet at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. Gov. Brad Henry has issued a Governor's Proclamation naming May 7, 2008, as "National Land and Range Day in Oklahoma."
The teams that will be arriving as early as today in Oklahoma will represent 35 states- with both FFA and 4-H clubs involved. The teens, 4-H and FFA members, qualify for the national event by placing among the top five teams at contests in their home states, according to contest cochairman Scotty Herriman. Herriman is president of the Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts, one of the contest's principal sponsors. He says the teens match their skills in judging the adaptability of the land for various purposes including farming, range management and home development. He notes the skills the teens apply at the contest involve principles they can apply in career fields like environmental and agricultural management, natural resource conservation, homebuilding and construction.
As soon as the contestants arrive today they will go to a practice site near Oklahoma City where numerous pits have been dug to give them a chance to analyze and learn more about Oklahoma soil conditions.
Wheat Tours and Crop Forecasts All on Tap This Week!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~This will be a very eventful and busy week for the Oklahoma wheat industry, as we have numerous local plot tours planned during the week- You can see the list listed within our calendar on our website by clicking here. In addition, we have the annual Wheat Quality Council's Hard Red Winter Wheat Crop Tour that hits most of Kansas and parts of several other HRW wheat producing states- it gets underway on Tuesday and we are looking forward to reports from Mike Schulte of the Oklahoma Wheat Commission for the first couple of days of the Tour- and Mark Hodges on the backside of the tour.
The middle part of the week will find the annual report session from scouts from across Oklahoma on the condition and potential size of the Oklahoma Wheat Crop- that report session is in conjunction with the Oklahoma Grain and Feed Association meeting this week on Wednesday midday.
We will get to almost immediately compare that number for the state of
Oklahoma- along with the Wheat Quality Crop Council guess for Kansas with
the first official guess of the season for USDA this coming Friday morning
as we will get our first field based survey of the 2008 winter wheat crop
unveiled by NASS at 7:30 AM central time.
Both Sides on the Ethanol Debate Continue to Chew Back and Forth...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Those that do not care for the government subsidies for ethanol have really kicked their campaign into a higher gear in recent days. On the national level, U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas is leading the charge in the Senate-spearheading another letter to EPA making the case for a waiver and authoring a bill to freeze the RFS at its current level. "This was a well intentioned measure, but it was also impractical. It's had an unintended, adverse economic impact on a large cross section of our nation," she said. U.S. Senator James Inhofe from Oklahoma recognized Hutchison's hard work during a speech on the Senate floor in which he called on Congress to revisit the ethanol mandate and asked EPA to exercise its "congressionally given authority to waive all or portions of these food-to-fuel mandates as part of its rulemaking process."
In the House, Republican Representative Jeff Flake from Arizona has sent a letter to President Bush and introduced the Remove Incentives to Produce Ethanol Act of 2008 (H.R. 5911)-a bill that's title speaks for itself.
However, not everyone is happy with the attention and added scrutiny
that the government's ethanol policies are now receiving. At a press
conference this past week in Washington, D.C., representatives from the
National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), the Renewable Fuels Association
and several other groups shot back and blamed high fuel prices and the
tightening oil market as the main culprits driving the increases in
commodity and food prices. "While we do have some role in higher corn
prices, we're closer to a Little Bo Peep than an ax murderer," said NCGA
President Rick Tolman.
Estate Planning Webcast- Sponsored by the Pork Checkoff- Available Live Tomorrow.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The survival of your farming operation depends on proper farm transfer planning. PorkCast - which is an online program sponsored by the Pork Checkoff, the Minnesota Pork Board and the University of Minnesota Extension Service - will take place Tuesday, May 6th. Extension Educator Gary Hachfeld says there are literally billions of dollars of assets at stake- but that many families have simply not done what they need to do to be prepared to move these assets from one generation to the next.
The PorkCast seminar is free and requires no pre- registration. To participate in the 'Farm Transfer and Estate Planning' PorkCast - go on-line Tuesday - starting at 1 PM Central Time at the link we have provided below. You don't have to be a pork producer or live in Minnesota for this information to be valuable to you. If you can't hook up on Tuesday afternoon- the link below will get you to where the program will be archived after Tuesday.
Korean Government Official Tells National TV Audience- US Beef Is Safe!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Mad Cow Disease in beef has been a major irritant in relations between Washington and Seoul and threatened the approval of a wider free-trade agreement. On Friday, South Korea's agriculture minister went on national television to assure his citizens - U.S. beef is safe from mad cow disease. Chung Woon-chun said, some concerns about mad cow disease were - to some extent exaggerated.
Last month South Korea agreed to resume imports of U.S. beef. It also agreed not to immediately halt imports even if a new case of mad cow disease is discovered in the U.S. Instead, it will only move to halt imports if the Paris-based World Organization for Animal Health downgrades its safety rating for American cattle.
Imports will be resumed in mid-May and be expanded in stages. First stage will allow imports of American beef from cattle younger than 30 months. This includes cuts with bones. Beef from older cattle will be cleared for import after the U.S. strengthens controls on feed to reduce chances of infection.
Red Hills Hereford Grassland Dispersion Sale Set for May 17.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Red Hills Herefords will hold a "Save the Grass Dispersion Sale" at the Flaming Farms Sale Facility, Clinton, Ok. with over 425 head to sell. The sale is set for Sunday, May 18 beginning at 11:00 AM.
Jimmie Johnson writes on their website "Darla and I would like to invite you out to the Red Hills of Western Oklahoma on Sunday, May 18th 2008 for the biggest Hereford sale ever to be held in Western Oklahoma. We will sell approximately 275 cows. Nearly all will have a calf at side. We are going to sell every single cow 2-years-old and older. By doing this, you can know that we are not holding back "the best ones." I have always said that one of the good things about our cattle is that they can go about anywhere and do well- simply because of the honest cattle conditions they are raised on. There will be cattle in this sale for every type of buyer, so come out Saturday night the 17th for food, drink and fellowship. Hopefully, you can find some moneymakers on Sunday that can help your program. Whether you are looking for the donor types or good uddered, hard working young cattle to start a herd or just add to your own good herd, we have something for everyone. As an added benefit, over 100 of these pairs are first calf heifers and another 100 are less than 5 years of age. You won't find that many young Hereford cows selling anywhere that I am aware of.
We the link to their website below- that has more information on their Hereford cattle- as well as a link there to download the full catalog for the upcoming sale. If you would prefer to give them a call- call Jimmie on his mobile phone at 580-331-8534.
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Checking the Markets...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~There was a huge Friday run at the Woodward Livestock Auction with just over 8200 head of cattle offered. Yearling cattle were selling for steady to three dollars up, with the calves under some pressure- steady to three dollars cheaper than a week earlier. Seven to eight hundred pound yearling steers sold from $107 to $111.
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