~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Wednesday August 12, 2009A service of Johnston Enterprises, P & K Equipment/ P & K Wind Energy and American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company!
-- Coming this morning- Crop Production & Supply Demand Reports Due Out
-- Mexican Feeder Cattle Discounts Continue- Is COOL to Blame?
-- Report Focuses on Rural Health Care- and the Need to Encourage More Profesionals to Serve Rural Areas
-- Raising Prawns in Farm Ponds Field Day Set for September 12
-- US Feedlots- Closer to Making Money This Fall
-- Oilseed Commission Needs Commissioners- Elections Set by State Ag Secretary Terry Peach
-- State Revenues Tumble in July
-- 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 pleased to have American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company as a regular sponsor of our daily update- click here to go to their AFR web site to learn more about their efforts to serve rural America!
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Coming this morning- Crop Production & Supply Demand Reports Due Out
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The focus will be on the size of the corn crop and the tightness of soybean stocks- but the reports will have a lot more than just those numbers. We will have the details from both of these reports- coming from different parts of USDA- later this morning on our website, Scheduled release time will be 7:30 AM central.
Pre report guesses about the size of the corn crop are right around 12.51 billion bushels, up from the USDA July guess of 12.29 billion bushels. Ideal growing conditions this summer in the midwest have offset the late planting that we saw in several key midwestern states- including Illinois and Indiana.
Meanwhile, the expectations for tighter soybean stocks will likely headline the supply-demand numbers. Darin Newsom of DTN says that while exports have slowed down some in recent weeks- the ending stocks number for soybeans domestically will still likely be smaller than a month ago. Pre report production guesses for soybeans center around the 3.2 billion bushel figure.
Go to our front page- and we expect to have several stories in our Top Agricultural News by 8:30 AM or so this morning about the numbers- Initial reports should be out before 8 AM. The link to our front page is below.
Mexican Feeder Cattle Discounts Continue- Is COOL to Blame?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The impact of Country of Origin Labeling has cost Mexican cattle producers millions of dollars for the cattle they sell into the southwestern part of the United States. We have a very interesting graph that shows the discounts came into play as COOL was rolled out this past year.
Medium and Large 1 and 1-2 steers for all of the USDA reported auctions in the state of Texas are combined to get a new weighted average price that is slid to 550 lbs. The weekly average composite price is then compared to the top and bottom of the Mexican crossing prices as reported by USDA Market News in Las Cruces, NM.
Over the last two years the price relationship dropped severly until at
times there was almost a 20 per cwt difference between the top Mexican
price and the average Texas price. In recent months the spread has
narrowed until last week when the the Texas weighted average price was
$100.66 and the top Mexican price was $95.00 (bottom price of $83.00),
resulting in only about a $5.00 per cwt difference ($25.00-$30.00 per
Report Focuses on Rural Health Care- and the Need to Encourage More Profesionals to Serve Rural Areas
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Center for Rural Affairs has released a report that examines the critical shortage of primary care providers in rural America, the importance of nurse practitioners as rural primary care providers, opportunities for rural nursing, and ultimately, how health care reform presents opportunities for nurses to improve access to and quality of health care for rural residents.
The author of the report, Melissa Florell, considers the shortage of primary care physicians to be at a - critical level. Over 20 percent of the U.S. population lives in rural areas, yet they are served by only nine percent of the nation's physicians. This shortage jeopardizes the nation's ability to meet the health care needs of the rural population and the discrepancy is expected to increase in coming years.
As a remedy the report identifies a legislative initiative, SB 790, in the U.S. Senate, that seeks to increase the supply of rural health care professionals, including nurses and nurse practitioners. The - Health Access and Health Professionals Supply Act of 2009 - introduced by Senator Bingaman of New Mexico - employs a variety of measures to provide opportunities, financial assistance, and incentives for health care practice in rural areas. The bill would: create a - pipeline - of middle and high school students interested in studying health care-related fields; increase funding for the National Health Service Corps; create a U.S. Public Health Sciences Track at selected universities to train health care professionals; and the bill would also help hospitals in underserved rural areas start community-based training for health care professionals in high need.
Raising Prawns in Farm Ponds Field Day Set for September 12
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~On September 12, Jeremy Eaton will host a field day to demonstrate how he's been raising freshwater shrimp, or prawns, for the past two years in the pond on his farm near Cashion, northwest of Oklahoma City. Eaton received a 2008 Oklahoma Producer Grant from the Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture to demonstrate the feasibility of raising prawns in farm ponds as an additional income source for Oklahoma farmers.
During the two-hour field day, which starts at 9:30, Eaton will harvest his second crop of prawns in as many years. In the meantime, he'll give visitors the lowdown on production methods, potential problems, and harvesting and marketing.
More details on this field day are up on our website- as well as a link to the Kerr Center site- who are helping sponsor this field day. Click ont he link below to check it out.
US Feedlots- Closer to Making Money This Fall
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~This fall will be the first real opportunity where profitability may return to our nation's feedlots. So says Tommy Beall, who was talking about market conditions this past Saturday at the Southern Plains Beef Symposium in Ardmore. Beall says that chance for profits in this ailing segment of the cattle industry will be even better in 2010, assuming that we get some bounce back in the economy in this country.
With corn prices down from the levels that feedlots were facing a year ago- breakevens are lower- and that brings them to a point where just a few dollars tacked onto current cash cattle prices could result in closeouts in the black. We talk about this situation the cattle market is now in on today's Beef Buzz.
We also have comments from economist Erin Daley of the US Meat Export
Federation, who breaks down beef exports for the first half of this
calendar year for us- Asian markets taking more beef than a year ago-
while Mexico lags by at least 30% down to the relative high price of US
beef compared to pork and poultry.
Oilseed Commission Needs Commissioners- Elections Set by State Ag Secretary Terry Peach
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Nominations are sought for a new five-member commission to represent and promote Oklahoma oilseed production. The Oklahoma Oilseed Commission was authorized by the state legislature and the election is being conducted through the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry. "It is of the utmost importance that the charter directors elected to this commission be the very best candidates possible," said State Secretary of Agriculture, Terry Peach. "They will be the producers who will actually bring the commission in to existence and make the decisions that ensure it succeeds in improving the industry and adds value to our oilseed production."
Much like other producer-funded industry commissions, the Oklahoma Oilseed Commission will collect an assessment from producers to fund research, market development, education, and enhance oilseed production. The assessment will be determined by commission directors after the election ends on October 2.
More on the nomination process- with a link to the nomination forms that must be used in the process- can be found on our website- click on the link below and check it out.
State Revenues Tumble in July
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~State Treasurer Scott Meacham said officials have ordered a 5 percent across-the-board cut in budget allocations to state agencies this month due to a sharp decline in revenue in July. Tuesday, Meacham released his revenue report for July, the first month of the new fiscal year. He said collections for the month were well below the prior year and the official estimate. Preliminary reports show collections totaled $336.7 million last month. That's $120.4 million less than last year and $74.4 million below the estimate.
State Finance Director Michael Clingman ordered a 5 percent reduction to each state agency's allocation in the month of August. That represents a total cut in allocations of $21.9 million for the month.
Both Democrats and Republicans expressed worry and a bit of
thankfulness in statements issued on Tuesday afternoon. Governor Brad
Henry says the numbers are bad, but not the end of the world. "The latest
budget numbers are certainly disappointing but not completely surprising
in light of recent revenue trends. Last month, we warned state agency
directors to be prepared to make additional cuts if revenues came up
short, and now that such a scenario has occurred, they will have to
implement those reductions
House Leader Chris Benge expressed concern- as well as the observation
that Oklahoma is still a lot better off than almost any other state in the
country- "Once again the July revenue numbers are proof that we are seeing
the continued effects of the global recession in Oklahoma. While the
numbers are disheartening, the decline was not wholly unexpected given the
depressed natural gas market and ongoing economic decline that is
affecting every state in this nation, many worse than ours.
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