~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Monday June 9, 2008!A service of National Livestock Credit, American Farmers & Ranchers and Midwest Farm Shows!
-- Wheat Harvest Inches Forward Over the Weekend- as Rain Shuts Down Many Locations Ready To Roll.
-- Henry Signs Senate Bill 1373- Authorizing the Bucket of Money for Endowed Chairs (and the Race is on!)
-- Pork Checkoff Is Working- The Word from the World Pork Expo.
-- Speaking of the World Pork Expo...
-- It WILL Pay to "Preg Check" Those First Time Heifers Entering Your Mama Cow Herd!
-- Say Sesame Please!
-- What It Is- a Way to Describe Animal Welfare...
-- Let's Check 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 National Livestock Credit Corporation as a regular sponsor of our daily email update. National Livestock Credit Corporation works diligently to provide unsurpassed service to their customers in the area of livestock financing. Check out the National Livestock Family of Services website by clicking here.
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Wheat Harvest Inches Forward Over the Weekend- as Rain Shuts Down Many Locations Ready To Roll.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~It's a guess- but we have perhaps thirty percent of the 2008 Oklahoma Winter Wheat Crop now harvested- and as I write this early Monday morning- it's raining at our place- and the thunder rolls. Rain has definitely delayed into later this week any opportunity to see combines pulling into any wheat fields in north central Oklahoma while other areas may dry out a little more quickly. We have a comprehensive update with Mark Hodges on our webpage- Wheat Harvest 2008- which we have linked below. We also remind you that if you check back later in the day- we will have further updates on harvest as we get them on that page- check back from time to time for the latest!!!
According to Mark Hodges, Executive Director of the Oklahoma Wheat
Commission, here are the percentages of harvest being complete in various
Let's talk about rainfall totals. There are a lot of places that have
had two and three inches of rain in the last few days- but based on
information from the Oklahoma Mesonet as of 4:30 AM on this Monday
morning- the area that includes Woods, Alfalfa, Major, Garfield, Grant and
Kay Counties continues to deal with an enormous amount of rain since this
past Thursday night- rainfall totals for these areas include
Continue to let us hear from you. We would love to hear about your harvest experience here in 2008- Especially your activity from the weekend! Drop us a note at the email address at the bottom of this daily news update- and it will be greatly appreciated!
Henry Signs Senate Bill 1373- Authorizing the Bucket of Money for Endowed Chairs (and the Race is on!)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~On Friday, Governor Brad Henry signed legislation to provide state funds matching private donations to endowed chairs at Oklahoma's colleges and universities. Senate Bill 1373 authorizes a $100 million bond issue for the endowed chair program. "In strengthening the endowed chairs programs, Oklahoma is making a significant leap forward ensuring academic excellence in our institutions of higher education," Governor Henry said. "This bond issue will enable our state's colleges and universities to recruit world-class professors. The world of academia is a highly competitive one, and it is critical that we give colleges and universities the tools they need to draw the best and brightest educators for our young people."
The money is divided up to offer $47 million dollars each to the University of Oklahoma and $47 million to Oklahoma State University- with $6 million to go to the regional Universities. It's our understanding that OU has a whole long line of donations "in queue" for their pot of money- they will use it all and still could use more- while OSU now has about $13 million dollars to be matched at this point. And that is where it gets REALLY interesting.
This past month, T. Boone Pickens pledged a pot of money of his own for
endowed chairs for Oklahoma State University- $100 Million to be matched
with other private fundraising efforts by the various University Colleges
and Divisions. Between now and the start of the new fiscal year- the rules
of the state matching private dollars is a one to one match- after July
first, the state will match the first $250,000 one to one- then a lesser
amount (20%) above that. That means there is a scramble at OSU to find
fresh monies for Endowed Chairs to take advantage of this unique "double-
Pork Checkoff Is Working- The Word from the World Pork Expo.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Accountability, trust and social responsibility serve as the foundation for what the Pork Checkoff is doing on behalf of pork producers. Steve Murphy, the chief executive officer for the National Pork Board says - we know that many producers are struggling right now with a profitability challenge. The pork organization leader says, - producers are using the Checkoff in many ways to build demand, move more products and raise a better product.
Murphy says - a total of 250 million pounds of pork have been sold as a result of Checkoff retail programs during the first and second quarter. Of that, 52 million pounds are incremental increases compared to the same time period last year. Murphy also points to the checkoff's success in putting more pork on the menus. Murphy points to - grilled breakfast sandwiches at one thousand Panera Bread Bakery locations to a new Butcher's Block line of fresh and frozen pork at 77 Sysco distribution centers.
Also, the checkoff is working to meet producers' expectations by focusing on input resources. The Checkoff has created Practical Ideas to Address High Feeds and Production Costs, a list of management tips and resources to assist producers in identifying opportunities to increase efficiencies and reduce cost. Murphy spoke during the just concluded World Pork Expo.
Speaking of the World Pork Expo...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We hope to catch up with Roy Lee Lindsay of the Oklahoma Pork Council later today as he is just back from Des Moines and the 2008 World Pork Expo. We traded emails with Roy Lee and we plan on talking more with him as he pulls together a report for his board on the event.
He does report to us that "One of the most telling things I heard was that we could expect the price of ethanol to continue to be approximately 66% of the cost of gasoline and with $3.75 gas and $2.50 ethanol, the ethanol plants could bid corn to $7.00 and still be at breakeven and that it would take $8.00 corn to force the shutdown of an ethanol plant. With oil up to $139 as of Friday, we should expect gas prices to increase and the amount ethanol plants can - and will - pay for corn will also go up.
"We also heard from Dr. Elwynn Taylor - a climatologist at Iowa State - and he was not optimistic about this corn crop. In fact, he believes that patterns are pointing toward a drought in the corn belt soon."
It WILL Pay to "Preg Check" Those First Time Heifers Entering Your Mama Cow Herd!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~OSU Beef Cattle Specialist Dr. Glenn Selk tells us that as you add heifers to your beef cattle herd- you need to check them once you get through the breeding season to make sure they are pregnant.
Dr. Selk says it will never be easier to get that heifer bred this first go round than at any time in her life in later years. It's also important to remember that if you check that heifer this summer and discover she is still open- then you can go ahead and cull her- feed her to a finished weight and condition- and get full market price for her when she is no more than 20 to 22 months of age. If you wait till next spring and realize that she is open- you cull her then and suddenly as a two year old plus- she brings not much more than what a cull cow would- hundreds of dollars less. Plus- you have spent valuable resources on her to bring her all the way through the winter in the Mama Cow Herd.
These thoughts from Glenn Selk are captured in our Monday Beef Buzz from the Radio Oklahoma Network- as heard on great radio stations around the state- and also available on our web site on our Beef Buzz page- just scroll down to today's date and there it is. AND- to help you jump quickly to today's show- we have it linked below for a quick way for you to go Beef Buzzing with Ron and Glenn!
Say Sesame Please!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~It's easy to forget that there are other crops here in the state being planted ( and a few to be harvested) in the rush of wheat harvest. But- farmers do have other "fish to fry" and one of those crops in that category is the new generation of Sesame that has been talked about the last year or so here in the southern Plains.
You may remember several years back when the late Tedrowe Coulter of Tonkawa was one of the big proponents of Sesame in the wheat belt of Oklahoma and southern Kansas. There were lots of benefits of the crop as touted by Tedrowe, including drought tolerance and heat loving- but the issue of shattering at harvest time was a major problem that simply could not be overcome- and sesame slipped to the back burner as a result.
We told you last summer about the new varieties being promoted by several folks this go-round- and these varieties seem to address some of the problems from those early generations- especially the problems at harvest. So, Wheeler Brothers and others are beating the drum for Sesame here in 2008- and we received this quick email note from Danny Peeper of Wheeler Brothers on Friday afternoon- "It might be of interest to you and your readers that we are making great progress in the planting of sesame around Watonga, Seiling, Canton, Enid, and several other areas. Some growers initiated the planted of sesame early by burning down troublesome ryegrass fields with glyphosate and we now have excellent stands on 2500 acres. As wheat harvest is progressing and there is good moisture from recent rains we are finding excellent opportunities to be placing more sesame in the ground everyday. We are expecting over 15,000 acres to be planted within the next 30 days." Peeper tells us that his initial goal was for ten to fifteen thousand acres of Sesame to be planted this year- but he adds that now it looks like it could approach 20,000 acres of this crop popular in arid and semi arid areas in other parts of the world. We'll keep you advised as to how these efforts go in offering a rotational choice for wheat in parts of Oklahoma just a little too dry for crops like soybeans.
What It Is- a Way to Describe Animal Welfare...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Courtesy of our friends at the Texas Cattle Feeders Association- we have this story from their weekly newsletter on one issue that the International Animal Health Organization met head on this past week during their annual meetings.
TCFA reports- A scientific definition of animal welfare was adopted by OIE at its general session held last week in Paris. The definition specifies that "animal welfare means how an animal is coping with the conditions in which it lives. An animal is in a good state of welfare if (as indicated by scientific evidence) it is healthy, comfortable, well nourished, safe, able to express innate behavior, and if it is not suffering from unpleasant states such as pain, fear, and distress. Good animal welfare requires disease prevention and veterinary treatment, appropriate shelter, management, nutrition, humane handling and humane slaughter/killing. Animal welfare refers to the state of the animal; the treatment that an animal receives is covered by other terms such as animal care, animal husbandry, and humane treatment."
Since the scientific definition is new language, the cattle industry
still has the opportunity to offer comments and proposed revisions through
USDA before the language becomes final. NCBA and TCFA are reviewing how to
improve the definition on behalf of cattlemen.
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A NOTE OF CLARIFICATION- We mentioned that both Senators Ron Justice, the Republican from Chickasha and Democrat Charles Wyrick of Fairland are unopposed in their reelection bids this fall for another term in the state Senate. These gentlemen served as CO-Chairs of the Senate Ag Committee this past year- as a part of the power sharing agreement in the Senate because of the tie in the number of Senators each party had this just concluded session.
Let's Check the Markets!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~It was another excellent run at the Woodward Livestock Auction as Jerry Nine and the boys sold 7,248 cattle this past Friday. Yearling Steers were a dollar cheaper than a week earlier, Heifers were steady to a dollar down and the Calves came in steady. Five to six hundred pound calves brought $115 to 124.50, with some value enahnced calves selling for as much as $131.50. Eight to nine hundred pound yearlings were sold for $103 to $109.50 in Woodward.
Meanwhile overnight electronic KC Wheat futures are up 19 cents a bushel early this Monday morning- as traders worry about enough number one wheat with adequate levels of protein to fulfill demand.
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