Subject: Oklahoma's Farm News Update
From: Ron Hays <>
Date: 4/13/2020, 5:30 AM

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We invite you to listen to us on great radio stations across the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network weekdays- if you missed this morning's Farm News - or you are in an area where you can't hear it- click here for this morning's Farm news from Ron Hays on RON.
Let's Check the Markets!  

OKC West is our Market Links Sponsor- they sell cattle three days a week- Cows on Mondays, Stockers on Tuesday and Feeders on Wednesday- Call 405-262-8800 to learn more.
Today's First Look:
mornings with cash and futures reviewed- includes where the Cash Cattle market stands, the latest Feeder Cattle Markets Etc.
Each afternoon we are posting a recap of that day's markets as analyzed by Justin Lewis of KIS futures- click here for the report- Justin's commentary linked here is from Thursday- as the markets paused for a three day weekend. 
Okla Cash Grain:  
Daily Oklahoma Cash Grain Prices- as reported by the Oklahoma Dept. of Agriculture.This report is from Thursday- as the futures markets were closed for Good Friday on Friday April 10. 
Futures Wrap:  
Our Daily Market Wrapup from the Radio Oklahoma Network - analyzing the Futures Markets from the previous Day.
Feeder Cattle Recap:  
The National Daily Feeder & Stocker Cattle Summary- as prepared by USDA.
Slaughter Cattle Recap: 
The National Daily Slaughter Cattle Summary- as prepared by the USDA.
TCFA Feedlot Recap:  
Finally, here is the Daily Volume and Price Summary from the Texas Cattle Feeders Association.

Our Oklahoma Farm Report Team!!!!
Ron Hays, Senior Farm Director and Editor
KC Sheperd, Associate Farm Director and Editor

Sam Knipp, Farm Editor

Pam Arterburn, Calendar and Template Manager
Dave Lanning, Markets and Production

Oklahoma's Latest Farm and Ranch News

Your Update from Ron Hays of RON
   Monday, April 13, 2020

Howdy Neighbors! 

Here is your daily Oklahoma farm and ranch news update. 

Extreme volatility in livestock markets is raising red flags across the country, leading the American Farm Bureau to urge the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange to leave no stone unturned as they monitor and analyze market activity.

American Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall applauds Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue for expanding USDA's investigation into market activity surrounding the Holcomb fire to include the volatility and disparities surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak in the United States.

"The level of frustration with market volatility among livestock producers has never been higher," said Duvall. "I applaud Secretary Perdue for his commitment to expand USDA's investigation. It won't bring back lost income for producers, but it will help to restore confidence in our pricing system."

Duvall spoke this week with both Secretary Sonny Perdue and CFTC Chairman Heath Tarbert about the rising concern and frustration among livestock producers. Duvall followed up with a letter to Chairman Tarbert.

The letter states, "We believe an intense examination of the volatility in cash and futures markets for beef, pork and dairy is needed to determine if any market manipulations have occurred to the financial detriment of farmers and ranchers... the disparity between the farm-level prices that producers receive and wholesale prices is alarming... We cannot afford to lose confidence in the integrity of the futures market nor the price discovery efforts in cash markets, on top of the many other market disruptions and stresses farmers and ranchers are facing."

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A "once in a lifetime shock to the beef industry" is how Dr. Glynn Tonsor, Kansas State University livestock market economist, described the current market situation during a webinar Thursday night. Key comments from Dr. Tonsor are spotlighted the latest Beef Buzz- available here.

This week we've seen increased conversations about the disparity in price for boxed beef versus cash cattle. Congressmen and agriculture officials have written letters requesting the USDA to investigate any possible market manipulation.

Dr. Tonsor said the market system has been "shocked" by the rapid changes due to COVID-19.

We raise whole animals and we produce a lot of different products, Tonsor said. Some products head to the food service market and some to the retail. When one segment is shut off overnight, it creates notable challenges to repurpose those products, he said.

The problem at the wholesale market becomes clear when you look at the various parts of the carcass. Chuck and round cuts have increased in price 28-36 percent, as these lower valued products are easier to sell at the retail level. Meanwhile, other cuts, such as ribs, briskets, short plates and loins have all decreased as there is no food service market for these products.

Another part of the equation is the processing side, where Tonsor noted concern about plants reducing workforces and slowing down production.

He said the exact size and location of the plants, which are scattered across the country is a factor.

No individual plant represents more than 7 percent of the overall national capacity, he said.

Three Disease and Now Freezing Temps- the Battle for the 2020 Oklahoma Wheat Crop

Oklahoma State University's Dr. Bob Hunger, Professor & Extension Wheat Pathologist, Department of Entomology & Plant Pathology, offers the following wheat disease update as of Saturday, April 11, 2020.

Dr. Hunger says "reports from this last week have indicated wheat across much of Oklahoma is at the boot (Feekes growth stage 10) stage with heads just starting to emerge. That is true around Stillwater, at Chickasha (per Dr. Brett Carver; OSU Professor/Wheat Breeder) and across southwestern OK (per Gary Strickland; County Educator; Jackson County). Of course, wheat in northwestern OK and the panhandle is not this far along, but also has made considerable progress.

And Dr. Hunger concludes- "In summary, multiple wheat foliar diseases are active in Oklahoma with the leaf spotting diseases, stripe rust and powdery mildew all being present to varying levels. The forecast for the next 7-10 days is cool to cold with some moisture likely. These are conditions that will be favorable for all these diseases to continue their activity and enhance their spread. 

Leaf rust, although not yet a problem in Oklahoma has become severe in south Texas, which typically means we will be seeing its arrival in Oklahoma within the next couple of weeks. Wheat across much of the state is at the boot stage with heads starting to emerge, so if a field has good yield potential now would be the time to consider applying a fungicide to protect against multiple foliar diseases. This is especially true if a susceptible variety has been planted."

Click or tap here for the complete report from Dr. Hunger from over the weekend. 


With that said by Dr. Hunger- the immediate worry in many locations across the Oklahoma Wheat Belt is the cold weather that has shown up for the first half of this week. 

As of 5 AM- here's the latest temperature map across the state- keeping mind that we have maybe two more mornings of similar temps before we get back above freezing in the overnight or early morning hours. 

And to help us see what is ahead this week- according to our old friend Jed Castles- it is gonna be on the coool side all of this week: his temps are obviously Oklahoma City- so do your plus or minus figuring where your are located at:

Included in the latest OSU Cotton Comments Newsletter, is the Successful Planting Strategy provided by Dr. Randy Boman(former state cotton specialist).

"Next to variety selection, most likely the next very important decision a producer makes is when to plant. The single most important issue to recognize is that cotton seedlings can be damaged by cool, wet soils. Depending upon the region of the U.S., many producers typically begin planting based the calendar date.

"However, the long-term optimum planting window for most states is determined based on field trials and average soil temperatures. Although soil temperatures can sometimes be high outside of this window, many times they can drop, especially if precipitation is obtained and a cold front pushes through the region.   The optimum temperature for cotton germination is near 85 degrees F°.

"Cooler temperatures can lead to poor stands or stand failures if the correct conditions align. Under cool temperatures the physiological processes involved in germination can be very slow which can in turn result in slow growth and perhaps increased susceptibility to various seedling disease pathogens.   It is suggested that planting be delayed until 1) mid-morning temperatures in the rooting zone exceed 60 degrees F° at a 6-inch planting depth, and 68 degrees F° at the 2-inch depth; 2) the five-day forecast indicates dry conditions and at least 25 DD60 heat units; and 3) the five-day forecast projects low temperatures above 50 degrees F°.   The standard calculation for cotton DD60 heat units is: ((maximum air temperature, F° + minimum air temperature, F°) / 2) - 60 = DD60 heat units Essentially, the average air temperature for the day is determined and the 60 degree F° developmental threshold for cotton is subtracted. The DD60s for each day are then totaled. If one has faith in the local forecast, then the projected high and low for the following several days can be used to calculate DD60s."

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Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor thanked members of the House Biofuels Caucus for their efforts to protect rural jobs and farm income threatened by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Led by Reps. Collin Peterson (D-Minn.), Rodney Davis (R-Ill.), Dave Loebsack (D-Iowa), and Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), 32 members of the caucus sent a letter urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to "take immediate action to ensure plants can retain skilled workers and continue production when market conditions improve." The letter echoes a call to action issued earlier this week by Senate leaders.

"We're grateful for the relentless efforts of House leaders to protect the farmers, biofuel workers, and rural businesses hit hardest by this crisis. Biofuel plants across the country have been forced to halt production, and the spike in unemployment and loss of farm income is crippling rural communities. The USDA should act quickly to deliver the relief approved by Congress and protect the economic engine that will fuel America's recovery in the months ahead.

The National Milk Producers Federation thanked the U.S. Department of Agriculture for allowing discarded milk to be counted toward milk marketings for the Dairy Revenue Production (DRP) or as actual marketings for the Livestock Gross Margin for Dairy (LGM-Dairy) programs.

That decision will allow dairy farmers participating in those risk management programs not to lose coverage on any milk that can't be marketed and will be helpful in mitigating some of the catastrophic damage many dairies face due to supply-chain disruption caused by the coronavirus crisis.

"The market realities of the COVID-19 era demand solutions, and USDA's decision is a balm for thousands of dairy farmers participating in these important risk-management programs," NMPF President and CEO Jim Mulhern.

"We commend USDA's decision and look forward to discussing further actions that can provide immediate relief for all dairy farmers, as outlined in our joint plan developed with the International Dairy Foods Association that we sent to the department earlier this week. Together, we can make a real difference for dairy, and we are pleased with USDA's action here."

Smithfield CEO Believes Closure of Their South Dakota Pork Plant Puts Meat Supply in Jeopardy Seven

Two very significant packing plants will not be operating today or for several days ahead- One is the JBS Beef Processing Plant in Greeley, Colorado.  JBS has reportedly spent a million dollars to get the testing kits for all of their workers in Greeley to be tested immediately. 

Indications are they will keep the plant closed this week until they have the test results and know who is not positive for the disease- then when they open up- they will be taking the temperature of all who are reporting for work daily. 

This plant was already off line the latter part of this past week for a deep clearning after a couple of workers at that plant died from COVID-19.

As for the pork side of the ledger, one of the larger pork processing plants in the US- the Smithfield Plant in Sioux Falls, South Dakota is closed for all of this week fo sure- they have a couple of hundred of their workers who have tested postive with the coronavirus.

In a statement to the media- Smithfield president & CEO Kenneth Sullivan said the closure of the facility, combined with other the shuttering of other similar plants across the country, is pushing the United States "perilously close" to the edge in terms of meat supply.

"It is impossible to keep our grocery stores stocked if our plants are not running. These facility closures will also have severe, perhaps disastrous, repercussions for many in the supply chain, first and foremost our nation's livestock farmers. These farmers have nowhere to send their animals," Sullivan said. "We have continued to run our facilities for one reason: to sustain our nation's food supply during this pandemic. We believe it is our obligation to help feed the country, now more than ever. We have a stark choice as a nation: we are either going to produce food or not, even in the face of COVID-19."

Our thanks to Midwest Farms Shows, P & K Equipment, AFR Insurance, Oklahoma Farm Bureau, Great Plains Kubota, Stillwater Milling Company, National Livestock Credit CorporationOklahoma Beef Council, Oklahoma AgCredit, the Oklahoma Cattlemens Association and  KIS Futures for their support of our daily Farm News Update. For your convenience, we have our sponsors' websites linked here- just click on their name to jump to their website- check their sites out and let these folks know you appreciate the support of this daily email, as their sponsorship helps us keep this arriving in your inbox on a regular basis- at NO Charge!

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We invite you to check out our website at the link below too that includes an archive of these daily emails, audio reports and top farm news story links from around the globe.   

God Bless! You can reach us at the following:  
phone: 405-473-6144


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