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Today's First Look:
mornings with cash and futures reviewed- includes where the Cash Cattle market stands, the latest Feeder Cattle Markets Etc.
has 326 cattle on their showlist for the Wednesday, July 17th sale of finished cattle - click here
to jump to the website.
At OKC West Livestock Auction
in El Reno steer and heifer calves were too lightly tested for an accurate trend. Click here
for the complete sale report.
Each afternoon we are posting a recap of that day's markets as analyzed by Justin Lewis of KIS futures
- click or tap here
for the report posted yesterday afternoon around 3:30 PM.
Okla Cash Grain:
Feeder Cattle Recap:
Slaughter Cattle Recap:
TCFA Feedlot Recap:
Our Oklahoma Farm Report Team!!!!
Ron Hays, Senior Farm Director and Editor
Carson Horn, Associate Farm Director and Editor
Pam Arterburn, Calendar and Template Manager
Dave Lanning, Markets and Production
Kane Kinion, Web and Email Editorial Assistant
Oklahoma's Latest Farm and Ranch News
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
The House Agriculture Subcommittee on Livestock and Foreign Agriculture heard the testimony from several groups, yesterday, in Washington, DC. The subcommittee's hearing was set to review the state of the U.S. livestock and poultry economies. Based on the testimony provided, it was made clear that the livestock industry faces many challenges on multiple fronts - including issues related to ongoing trade disputes, a declining farm economy, the threat of animal diseases and labor reforms.
Subcommittee Chairman Jim Costa
released a statement
upon the conclusion of the hearing, in which he reaffirmed his commitment to working toward the speedy resolution of the issues described by those who testified.
"As the overall economy grows, it's increasingly clear that its success isn't shared evenly at all levels, especially in rural, agricultural areas," said Costa, outlining the many barriers that stand in the way of the industry's economic success. "I commit to working within the Subcommittee to address these challenges, so our livestock and poultry producers can get back to what they do best, producing the highest-quality products for consumers in the U.S. and around the world."
Costa's Republican colleagues, Subcommittee Ranking Member David Rouzer
and Committee Ranking Member K. Michael Conaway
, issued their own joint-statement
after the day's proceedings. Their remarks reassured stakeholders of the committee's efforts being undertaken to address these issues through the continued implementation of the 2018 Farm Bill. It also emphasized the importance of ratifying the USMCA trade agreement as one tool to help alleviate the economic stresses on the industry.
"Today's hearing highlighted a number of threats facing the livestock and poultry industries. While the 2018 Farm Bill worked to address many of these threats, it's impossible to talk about the state of the livestock or poultry economies without discussing the $2.2 billion elephant in the room for agriculture - USMCA. As we heard again today, producers are clamoring for the additional certainty, benefits of increased access and added protections that USMCA promises with two of our most important trading partners. I again urge my colleagues across the aisle to join me in committing to working together to approve USMCA," said Ranking Member Conaway.
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Both the U.S. pork and beef industries face numerous challenges here at home and abroad that, if not addressed soon, will pose significant harm to American farms, its rural communities and ultimately its consumers. That message was delivered Tuesday to the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Livestock and Foreign Agriculture in testimony offered by National Pork Producers Council President David Herring, and Kelley Sullivan Georgiades, a fourth-generation rancher from Texas.
Both witnesses testified that unresolved trade disputes with many of our major trading partners presents one of the greatest challenges currently facing the ag industry as it continues to suppress the sector's economic growth. In her testimony, Georgiades remarked that "The most important thing this Congress can do for American ranchers is to approve the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement," warning that "failure to maintain free trade with Mexico and Canada would be devastating to cattle producers." Read Georgiades' full testimony from yesterday's hearing, by clicking here
Herring shared similar concerns about the state of US trade relations with China, Japan and the European Union. "One of the most damaging threats to the U.S. pork industry has been the punitive, retaliatory trade tariffs that China and other countries have imposed," Herring told the subcommittee.
In addition to trade issues, he also cited the importance of ensuring the prevention of foreign animal disease such as African Swine Fever from entering our borders - as well as several other priorities including needed reforms to address serious labor shortages in the industry, moving forward on the implementation of the 2018 Farm Bill, and developing the right regulatory framework for gene-edited livestock. Read more about Herring's testimony and the priorities of the NPPC, by clicking here
This week, the National Corn Growers Association renewed its pressure on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to follow President Trump's commitment to farmers and stop giving Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waivers to big oil companies, re-running the organization's ad that first ran last month.
NCGA members are in Washington, D.C. this week for Corn Congress and meetings with lawmakers on Capitol Hill. Farmers will be urging policymakers to support legislation in the House, H.R. 3006, and Senate, S. 1840, that would seek to stop waiver abuse.
Since the early part of 2018, EPA has granted 53 RFS small refinery exemptions (SREs), or waivers, totaling 2.61 billion ethanol-equivalent gallons of renewable fuel. There are currently 39 refinery exemption petitions pending for the 2018 compliance year. NCGA has highlighted numerous reasons why the EPA should not grant additional waivers.
You can watch the ad and read more from NCGA regarding the exemptions granted by the EPA, by clicking or tapping here.
Oklahoma State University Extension Livestock Market Economist Dr. Derrell Peel has been travelling the countryside during the summer of 2019. Having just returned to Oklahoma from his recent travels, he shared some of the takeaways he observed about the cattle industry along the way with us. According to Peel, the challenges that currently exist are fairly evident, particularly when it comes to the production of both forage hay and grain crops that will be harvested this fall.
"We continue to see some challenges in the country. Obviously, things are pretty green, so from a forage standpoint that looks pretty good. However, hay production has been a challenge this year. It's been late because of the wet conditions," Peel explained, remarking on how difficult is has been to put up quality hay this year due to the lingering dampness.
In addition, Peel also observed a wide-range of corn crop condition. While most is in good condition, the crops' development varies anywhere from knee to shoulder height. Peel says, he took notice at a cattle conference, that more and more producers are considering or have already taken action to switch from traditional cow-calf production to either a combined or full stocker operation model. He says this trend is part of a response to regional shifts and the availability of resources.
You can listen to the whole conversation between Dr. Peel and I on Tuesday's Beef Buzz - here.
The vision of the Oklahoma Beef Council is to be a positive difference for Oklahoma's farming and ranching families and the greater beef community and its mission is to enhance beef demand by strengthening consumer trust and exceeding consumer expectations. To learn more, visit www.oklabeef.org. Also, don't forget to like its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/oklabeef for stories on Oklahoma's ranching families and great beef recipes.
Agriculture groups are evaluating the Department of Labor's H-2A proposal announced earlier this week. American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall welcomed the proposal, thanking the Trump administration for "recognizing the need to reform" the program. However, noting the rule is lengthy, Duvall says AFBF will "evaluate it closely for its potential to assist growers with their labor needs." A comment period on the nearly 500-page proposal will close in September.
The proposal claims to streamline the H-2A application process, strengthen protections for workers, expand enforcement tools, and update methods used to determine the Adverse Effect Wage Rates and prevailing wages. The proposal also expands the program to include employers engaged in reforestation and pine straw activities.
The proposal comes as Republican Representative Rick Crawford of Arkansas recently introduced legislation to make similar changes to the program, along with moving authority of H-2A to the Department of Agriculture. Click here
to read Duvall's full reaction to these proposed reforms.
High Plains Journal is hosting a two-day learning opportunity, Cattle U, July 31 and Aug. 1 at the United Wireless Arena in Dodge City, Kansas. There will be several general sessions and breakout sessions aimed at cow-calf, stocker and feeder producers. Producers in attendance will gain practical knowledge on a variety of topics including animal health, genetics, marketing, nutrition, reproduction, forage and range management, and finance.
Speakers will help cattlemen and women learn practical ways to improve cattle health on their operations while sustainability maximizing profits on every head. They will also help producers unleash the power of marketing. Headlining as keynote speakers are Dr. Dan Thomson, a third-generation veterinarian recognized internationally as a leader in beef cattle production and health management and as host of the popular RFD-TV program, "DocTalk;" and Glen Klippenstein, who served the past fiver years as board president for Protect the Harvest, an organization dedicated to the defense and preservation of American freedoms enjoyed by farmers, ranchers, outdoor enthusiasts, and animal owners.
Events will kick off July 31 at 10 a.m., and the last speaker will take the stage Aug. 1 for the closing general session at 3:30 p.m. Registration is now open at $125. However, High Plains Journal subscribers look in your issue for a $30 discount code. The discount code is applicable until July 20. Registration includes two days of Cattle U keynote speakers, sessions and panels; access to the Cattle U trade show; a one-year subscription to HPJ (for non-subscribers); online access to all presentations; access to the Cattle U Roundup Rodeo Tent Social; post-event coverage and video access; complimentary lunch on Aug. 1, snacks and beverages provided both days.
Our Associate Farm Director Carson Horn spoke with event organizer Holly Martin. Hear her talk more about what's on tap at this event in her full conversation with Carson and to find additional details about the schedule and how to register, click here.
And Finally- We Chew A Little More on Labeling of Beef With It's Origin
On Monday- we featured comments from the CEO of R-Calf USA, Bill Bullard, from an interview we did with him between meetings that he was speaking at in Oklahoma with cattlemen- the meetings put on by the OISA.
I had forgotten the level of passion that we dealt with for years about the COOL issue- and it has resurfaced again during the USMCA ratification discussion- at least the old proponents of COOL have brought it back up and have gotten several Democratic members of Congress that were mostly not around during the last go round of Yes to COOL and then No to COOL to call upon the Trump Administration to go back, reopen USMCA and insert COOL language.
The proponents of COOL got their day in the sun from 2012 to 2015 when mandatory COOL was put into place- this during the Obama years and Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack.
The government involvement in this labeling meant that packers either decided to not accept and kill cattle that may have come from either Canada or Mexico- or they set aside a separate time (day or part of a day's kill) to process only those animals that may either be coming directly from one of the two countries or from feeder cattle that came from Mexico or Canada and then were finished in an USA feedlot.
The labels for muscle cuts were complicated- Here's a label from 2015 that showed what a Mexican calf's beef had to show if it was to be marketed retail in the US:
There were studies that showed little interest by the majority of consumers and one that Dr. Glynn Tonsor of K-State was a part of (as well as Dr. Jayson Lusk of OSU) concluded that "there was no change in demand following implementation of MCOOL." The authors concluded the cattle industry was suffering economic loss because of mCOOL.
Bullard, after listening to our report that he was featured in on Monday- took exception to my comments about going to a Walmart Super Center and observing what information is currently in the meat case for consumers that want to examine the package closely enough. He has little regard to the "Product of the USA" label saying it only means it is harvested or processed in the US- but could include beef from animals that started their lives in one of the countries here in North America.
We traded multiple emails- Bullard cited one of the Ad Hoc questions from the Jayson Lusk FooDS Survey that was conducted monthly out of the Ag Econ Department at OSU- pointing to that as showing value for the label and that consumers would pay more for US only beef as opposed to something coming from Canada.
He also offered these comments- which I asked if I might share with you this morning-
"I listened to your story this morning. Your "Product of the USA" Choice cut you viewed at Walmart is quite possibly derived from cattle born and raised in Canada or Mexico and simply slaughtered and/or processed in a United States packing/processing plant. It does not denote the country of origin as mandatory COOL did from May 2013 through Dec. 2015, and would do if it were reinstated. It only denotes where the meat was processed. Thus, it does not differentiate products exclusively produced by American farmers and ranchers.
"The grass-fed Jones Creek Beef is another matter. That label is likely approved by the USDA and the beef is most likely an exclusive USA-origin product. That is very good from our perspective. But, it supports our contention that only if the actual beef purveyor (packer/retailer) wants to label beef as to origin will the beef be so labeled. In this case, the Jones Creek Beef company wants the label. I don't know the volume of beef produced by this company, or other similar companies, but I know it is but a small percentage of the beef produced in the U.S."
Bullard concludes by saying "Your rebuttal used to marginalize my comments ("In reality") consisted of information that a reporter should have known before the interview, and should have asked during the interview before using it in an attempt to discredit the interviewee."
The argument over COOL boils down to those that want the Government to dictate what a label can say and then have the industry change their practices to conform(that was mCOOL) and then there are those who want the marketplace drive what is on a label- harvesting value from consumers based on what they want to know and will actually pay to know.
One more note- Beef sellers who are focused on giving the consumer what they seem to want is what I saw in the other supermarket that is close by in the OKC metro- Crest Supermarket. They feature Certified Angus Beef and they are spotlighting the Angus brand and a guarantee that the product will taste and eat great- as John Huston told me years ago- we gotta deliver a great eating experience every time. (and I saw no country of origin on the packaging at Crest.)
If you want to go back and review our Beef Buzz from Monday that generated all of these words in follow up- click or tap here.
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