~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Friday February 27, 2009A service of Johnston Enterprises, American Farmers & Ranchers and Midwest Farm Shows!
-- The Obama Budget and Agriculture
-- Reaction from Several Directions on the Obama Budget
-- From the Commodity Classic- Herbicide Resistant Sorghum on the Horizon
-- Record Entries for the 2009 Oklahoma Youth Expo- We visit with Jeramy Rich
-- NFU Convention a Week Away- and Promises to Be a Wild Affair
-- Animal Rights Extremists Three Ways
-- Looking for a Bull or Two or Three- Check Out These Purebred Sales This Coming Week
-- Looking at our Agricultural 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 AFR web site to learn more about their efforts to serve rural America!
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The Obama Budget and Agriculture
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Calling it - A New Era of Responsibility, President Obama as unveiled a 3.55 trillion dollar budget for fiscal year 2010. In the President's message Mr. Obama pledged - we will make the investments in the next three years to double our Nation's renewable energy capacity. In the process, he added, - we will put Americans to work in new jobs that pay well - jobs installing solar panels and wind turbines and develop the new energy technologies that will lead to even more jobs and more savings, putting us on the path toward energy independence.
The USDA budget comes in at $26 billion which is .7% of the total Obama budget. While there is more money for nutrition and perhaps a few more dollars for conservation- from that point on- it's all about cutting back on traditional agriculture programs.
There are cuts proposed in the Farm Program Commodity program, in crop
insurance and in the MAPP overseas promotion program. And the Obama
Administration says that the job of the RC&D is done as far as the
feds are concerned- it's up to the states and local government to fund
that program from this point forward as they zero it out.
Reaction from Several Directions on the Obama Budget
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Chairman of the Senate Ag Committee, Tom Harkin of Iowa, says the Obama Budget Plan is a good one for agriculture, saying "we need every federal dollar to go where it can do the most good. In scrubbing the budget, the President has focused on reforming large commodity program payments and the direct Freedom to Farm payments."
The Iowa Senator adds- "the proposal for increased nutrition funding is a critically needed and justified investment in better diets and nutrition for America's children, which can lead to lifelong better health and wellness. This investment goes hand-in-hand with and is integral to the president's call for health care reform because it is a key prevention strategy."
The National Cattlemen's Beef Association points out that the Obama Administration wants to deal with the Estate Tax issue through their budget blueprint. NCBA says in their weekly Capitol Concerns email "Of note, the budget proposes maintaining the estate tax at its 2009 levels of $3.5 million for individuals and $7 million for couples, at a rate of 45%. By freezing 2009 estate tax parameters, the budget estimates federal revenue would increase by $121 billion over five years and $288 billion over 10 years. Under current law, the estate tax is set to expire and will fully repeal in 2010 for one year. In 2011, the estate tax will reset at pre-2001 levels (55% and only $1 million exemption). If no further action is taken, President Obama's proposal will nullify the sunset schedule for the estate tax by freezing the 2009 levels."
Several groups and lawmakers weighed in on the budget numbers for USDA- we have several of those linked as stories on our website this morning. The link below takes you to our ag news page- scroll down and look for the stories that begin with the slug "Obama Administration's Fiscal Year 2010 Budget"- those we have comments from include the National Cotton Council, Congressman Frank Lucas and Senator Saxby Chambliss.
From the Commodity Classic- Herbicide Resistant Sorghum on the Horizon
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~One of the exciting stories that we have learned more about at the 2009 Commodity Classic is the discovery through conventional breeding of sorghum of genes that help resist certain classes of herbicides. Sorghum Partners, Inc. has submitted a patent application for dinitroanaline resistant sorghum and has made a seed deposit supporting the patent application. Larry McDowell, President of Sorghum Partners, Inc. says: "This breakthrough in herbicide resistance in sorghum is the result of several years of concentrated effort to develop sorghum that can be rotated with (or double cropped behind) cotton and/or soybeans without fear of herbicide damage." The class of herbicides known as dinitroanalines is best known for the herbicide brands Treflan and Prowl H2O.
Grain & cotton farmers will have the ability to break the practice of non-selective herbicides on every field every year. McDowell adds: "The best way to slow herbicide resistance is to rotate crops .and, herbicides." Hybrid sorghum resistant to dinitroanalines makes that rotation possible and practical.
We caught up with David Thomas of Sorghum Partners, who tells us more about this discovery and what it may mean to sorghum growers in the next few years. He sees the first varieties with this breeding in the Hybrid within two or three years- if things stay on schedule. Jump to our link below and you can see more on this story and listen to our conversation with David about the benefits of this advancement for the grain sorghum business.
Record Entries for the 2009 Oklahoma Youth Expo- We visit with Jeramy Rich
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Oklahoma Youth Expo is just a couple of weeks away as 2009 marks the 95th year of this great event. Since 1915 Oklahoma youth and their families have been making this event a tradition in their lives; a pinnacle to a year of hard work and through the years making this event not only the World's Largest Junior Livestock Show but an event which highlights the world's best and brightest young people.
We sat down and talked with Executive Director Jeramy Rich about the 2009 event- he says most entries are in- with nearly 13,800 animals now entered to come and compete in Oklahoma City in mid March. Seven Thousand youth are expected to participate in the 2009 event from all 77 counties- and Rich says despite the economic challenges happening today here in Oklahoma and across the country- we will still see about $2 million to be awarded in prizes and scholarships to these young people.
Jeramy will be our guest on Saturday morning on our TV segment, In the
Field, that is seen on KWTV News9 in Oklahoma City. Our segment runs
during the local news bloc that is on Saturday mornings from 6 to 8 AM-
our interview with Jeramy will be on around 6:40 AM. By the way- some
folks that receive KWTV over the air have been having some problems
gettingt he digital signal to line up right. If you are having trouble
with a converter box or a digital tuner in a TV, go to your settings and
rescan the digital spectrum- that should help you re-acquire the KWTV
signal just fine. For more on getting this done, click
here for the News9 website and info on tuning the signal in.
NFU Convention a Week Away- and Promises to Be a Wild Affair
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We visited on the phone for a few minutes with Terry Detrick, the new President of American Farmers & Ranchers about the upheaval in the national organization that they remain a part of- the National Farmers Union. AFR, once known as the Oklahoma Farmers Union, is the largest state Farmers Union group in the country, with more than 40% of the total membership of the national group.
That places Detrick in the role of being a key player as the group tries to decide how to define itself and who to elect to their National Presidency with the word that Tom Buis is leaving NFU for the ethanol maker Growth Energy. (By the way- Detrick says after talking with Buis before the announcement became public- he sees the value of Buis in this role to be a vocal advocate for biofuels from ag products and agrees with the idea that Buis can do more for rural America there than by staying at NFU)
Terry tells us that their by-laws say that in this type of last minute
situation, any NFU that can secure ten delegates to sign off on their
nomination can run for the office of President for this one year unexpired
term that Tom Buis leaves. Detrick has NO interest in the job- one that he
ran for without success in 2002. he says that there is plenty for him to
do at AFR as he has taken the reins after the departure of Ray Wulf
earlier this month.
Animal Rights Extremists Three Ways
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~First of all- we had a story earlier this week about the OSU Vet School having to defend it self against the charges of Mrs. T. Boone Pickens who claims she gave five million dollars to that segment of OSU- and has now told the OSU Foundation- Move It or Lose It. She calls their practices (The School of Vet Medicine) "Barbaric" and wants changes. Well, our Griffin TV station in Tulsa, KOTV News on 6, has done a nice piece on Alums standing up for the honor of the program- Click here to take a look at a nice piece anchored by Jennifer Loren.
Secondly, in talking with some of our fellow farm broadcasters, it appears that there are states dead in the middle of the crosshairs of the HSUS. One of them is apparently Ohio, where HSUS rolled into the state- met with ag and livestock interests and told them bluntly- we are going to put into place changes in state law in how livestock are to be treated- you can either meet with us and have a seat at the table and help make it happen- fight us and raise money and we will raise more and we will win. I am not sure what specifics they may want to be changing- but probably if you look at the Prop 2 accomplishments- that is what they are probably after at the very least. It is a scary time to be in the livestock business when a group feels that cocky about their ability to tell you how they think livestock should be raised and handled.
Finally, we have the groups that go over the top when it comes to
violence against those in the livestock and animal protein business.
Attacks on the global food chain from animal rights and environmental
extremists jumped 42% - from 155 in 2007 to 220 in 2008 - according to
Arlington, Virginia-based Animal Agriculture Alliance (Alliance). Worse
yet, claimed attacks on food retailers in the USA from groups like the
Animal Liberation Front exploded 377%.
Looking for a Bull or Two or Three- Check Out These Purebred Sales This Coming Week
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~This coming Wednesday, March 4, the Glover Cattle Company will be holding their annual spring performance tested Bull sale. They will be selling 98 18 to 20 month old Angus bulls with performance and ultrasound data. For details, you can call the ranch at 580-492-4612 or click here for their listing with links to their catalog and more on our Auction page at WWW.OklahomaFarmReport.Com
Thursday and Friday- you can travel to Yukon and the 2009 Express Ranch Spring Limousin and Angus Bull Sale. Express Ranches will be selling 600 bulls plus 225 females during this two day sale. For more information, you can call 1-800-664-3977 or click here for more on this sale offering.
Finally, next Saturday, March 7- mark your calendars and plan to be at Pollard Farms in Waukomis for the Pollard Farms Performance Genetics Angus Bull & Commercial Female Sale. One Hundred service age Bulls will be offered and a great selection of females will sell, too. For information, call Pollard Farms at (580) 758-1464- or click here for our Auction listing with a link to their catalog for the March 7 sale.
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Looking at our Agricultural Markets...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Stockman's Livestock Market in Apache was another of those feeder cattle markets that melted down last week- and got a good bit of the loss back in this week's sales. The total run yesterday was 4,169 cattle, with yearling weights $3 to $6 higher, with calves up $4 to $6. Demand was good with five weight calves bringing from $104 to $111 while seven hundred pound steer yearlings coming in from $90.75 to $96. Click here for the full Apache report- I would expect the February 26 report be up on line by around 8 AM central time on Friday.
Here are some links we will leave in place on an ongoing basis- Click
on the name of the report to go to that link:
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