From: Ron Hays [] on behalf of Ron Hays []
Sent: Thursday, April 21, 2011 7:27 AM
To: Hays, Ron
Subject: Oklahoma's Farm News Update
Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Thursday April 21, 2011
A service of Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, Midwest Farm Shows and KIS Futures!
-- Another Cruelty Video Pops Up- This Time Dairy Calves Being Bashed at Texas Feedyard
-- Trade Pact Momentum Should Continue
-- Do You Ya Think It'll Rain???
-- Severe Weather's Aftermath Can Give Cattle a Bellyache
-- Black Eyed Peas- Could They Provide Drought Tolerant Salvation?
-- A Value Added Success Story- Premium Natural Beef
-- Cattle on Feed Today- Good Friday Holiday Tomorrow
-- Let's Check the Markets!

Howdy Neighbors!

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 KIS Futures as a regular sponsor of our daily email update. KIS Futures provides Oklahoma Farmers & Ranchers with futures & options hedging services in the livestock and grain markets- Click here for the free market quote page they provide us for our website or call them at 1-800-256-2555- and their IPHONE App, which provides all electronic futures quotes is available at the App Store- click here for the KIS Futures App for your Iphone.

We are also excited to have as one of our sponsors for the daily email Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, with 64 years of progress through producer ownership. Call Brandon Winters at 405-232-7555 for more information on the oilseed crops they handle, including sunflowers and canola- and remember they post closing market prices for canola and sunflowers on the PCOM website- go there by clicking here.

And we salute our longest running email sponsor- Midwest Farm Shows, producer of the recent Southern Plains Farm Show as well as the Tulsa Farm Show. Click here for the Midwest Farm Show main website to learn more about their lineup of shows around the country!

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.

If you have received this email by someone forwarding it to you, you are welcome to subscribe and get this weekday update sent to you directly by clicking here.

Another Cruelty Video Pops Up- This Time Dairy Calves Being Bashed at Texas Feedyard
Video footage shot secretly at a Texas farm shows workers bashing in the skulls of sick and injured calves with pickaxes and hammers, burning calves and dragging calves by their ears.

Chicago-based group Mercy For Animals said an employee at E6 Cattle Co. in Hart, Texas, recorded the footage it released Wednesday. The employee quit after obtaining the video and apparently did not report the abuse to local authorities or to the owner of the feeding operation.

"I take full responsibility for what happened in the video," E6 Cattle Co. Owner Kirt Espenson said in a statement issued to Lubbock, Texas, television station KCBD. Espenson says he has refreshed his staff of 75 on animal welfare guidelines. "No employee will ever work a day on my feed yard not properly trained on animal welfare," he said. "It is inexcusable, and we're taking this most sincerely to resolve it so it never happens again."

Espenson adds this note of remorse to others in the cattle industry- "I let an entire industry down by the lack of management I provided."

The Mercy for Animals group did not report the activity they were recording to stop the suffering, but rather gathered several days of material to prepare their video released this week. This seems at odds with their mission statement which says that they believe that "non-human animals are irreplaceable individuals with morally significant interests and hence rights." The statement adds they oppose those animals being exploited. The group points to animal agriculture as the source of 99% of the misery of animals in the United States and as the chief exploiters of these animals.

ndividual ranchers and dairymen on Twitter were quick to condemn the actions seen on the video, saying that these actions are not the norm. And Texas livestock groups issued a statement on Wednesday afternoon, condemning the action and again saying that is not the way business should be done. The groups involved say in their statement that they are "appalled by the deplorable euthanasia methods depicted in the Mercy for Animals video. They in no way reflect the actions of the thousands of Texas farmers and ranchers who work hard every day to provide their animals with the best care possible."

Click here for more on this story- we have links to the Mercy for Animals video and the KCBD story and the full statement by the Texas Livestock Groups

Trade Pact Momentum Should Continue
U.S. Grains Council President and CEO Thomas Dorr says - the recent momentum on trade is very encouraging for U.S. agriculture. We hope to see this momentum continue to where the United States could have bilateral agreements formally in place with Colombia, Panama and Korea by mid-summer, if not before. Dorr says the three trade agreements are critical components of United States' competitiveness in the international marketplace.

According to USGC, the three agreements offer potential gains of over 2.4-billion dollars in U.S. agricultural exports. The Council believes these gains are critical not only to accomplish President Obama's goal of doubling exports by 2015 but also in generating a significant increase in both U.S. jobs and income.

USGC Chairman Terry Vinduska, says the United States continues to face competitive challenges. He says these agreements will hopefully restore a more level playing field for U.S. coarse grain exports. Vinduska says ratification of these agreements will enhance the creditability of the United States with its global trading partners on the overall trade agenda.

Do You Ya Think It'll Rain???
Chances of rain are looking better for the next few days, with the best chances in eastern Oklahoma- but central and some of western Oklahoma may get some action as well.

In reviewing what both of our weather gurus are saying- Travis Meyer with the News on 6 offered a few thoughts on the changing jet stream last night, which could mean a much better shot in the next several weeks for some rain storms to come calling on most parts of Oklahoma. Meanwhile, Gary England with News9 talked rain chances stay in the mix today right through the weekend to Monday- unfortunately Gary sees limited rainfall potential in far western Oklahoma counties.

Click on the LINK below and you can see both of our weather guys in action with what they see as the best shot for rainfall west of I-35 in quite some time.

Click here for the Travis Meyer video and a link on over to the Gary England video on rain chances into the weekend.

Severe Weather's Aftermath Can Give Cattle a Bellyache
The aftermath of Oklahoma's recent tornadoes has many cattle producers walking their pastures looking for insulation, building materials and other debris that may negatively affect animal health and time management costs.
Cattle will eat just about anything that looks interesting in the pasture, cautions Doug Maxey, Okmulgee County Extension director and agricultural educator.
"Producers are going to have to pick up as much debris from their pastures as possible," Maxey said. "This can be a painstaking, labor-intensive process given the potential amount of small debris."

Insulation can cause bloat, impaction and gastro-intestinal problems when consumed, including possible hemorrhaging of the rumen. Nails and other small pieces of metal can cause "hardware" disease, health problems associated with the consumption of metal.
Dr. Gene Parker, Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service veterinarian and area food animal quality and health specialist, said a single piece of wire consumed by a bull, cow, heifer or calf can drop down into the reticulum, the first stomach, where it potentially can pierce the heart.
Other problems sometimes associated with "hardware" disease are the shutting down of the rumen, depression, acute pain and decreased milk production.

"Cattle producers may want to use rumen magnets if there appears to be a significant amount of metal debris in pastures," Parker said. "A rumen magnet may be a health-care investment well worth the money."
Local large-animal veterinarians have information on rumen magnets, including associated costs and availability.

Click here for more on what to look for in your pastures after severe weather dumps junk in your pastures.

Black Eyed Peas- Could They Provide Drought Tolerant Salvation?
Extended droughts were far worse in the Little Ice Age that ended just 150 years ago, but big droughts are also likely in the world's future if we are in a new warming cycle. This prospect pushes the un-exciting Black-Eyed Pea into an unlikely starring role

The cowpea-better known in America as the black-eyed pea--is an important food source in Africa, Asia, and the southern United States. Cowpea already grows better than most crops in hot, dry climates, but a veteran plant breeder at Texas A&M is using thermal imaging to select the most drought-tolerant genotypes of cowpeas to help maximize global food and livestock feed.

Dr. B. B. Singh thinks genetic engineering could make the cowpea even more drought-tolerant than today. If so, it could play a big role in drought-proofing both world food needs and global livestock feed supplies for the future by expanding its role as a major food staple.
"Our preliminary studies have shown one major gene for drought tolerance in cowpeas," says Singh. "We're trying to transfer that gene into the improved varieties- that have good health factors and are aphid resistant. We hope these new varieties will have major impact improving food production in the southern U.S., Africa, Asia, and Brazil.

Click here to read more about these breeding efforts as modern agriculture attempts to find ways to feed the world.

A Value Added Success Story- Premium Natural Beef
One of the rising stars in southwest Oklahoma is not just a person- but rather a couple of families with a brand- that brand is Premium Natural Beef. We caught up with Dr. Charles Freeman of Hobart at the recent TSCRA Trade Show in San Antonio- and he shared the Premium Natural Beef story with us- and we are telling that story to you today and tomorrow on the Beef Buzz.

Premium Natural Beef is the story of two high school friends who have joined up to produce a beef eating experience for the consumer that begins in the genetics of highly productive Angus cattle. CR Freeman and Kirk Duff have joined Duff Cattle Company's Power Plus Genetics with Premium Natural Beef to deliver that product from the calf to the dinner plate.
At the heart of Premium Natural Beef is a three-tiered commitment to quality and safety: First, all cattle are Angus, with many having a similar genetic background. Second, all cattle spend time in their feed lots before harvest, ensuring they are fed the same quality ration. Third, Premium Natural Beef harvests all cattle between fourteen and twenty- one months of age, guaranteeing the beef is at the ideal point to create a choice, flavorful product.

We have known CR's dad for years- Dr. Freeman ran a successful Vet practice in Hobart- served within the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture for several years and has now returned to southwest Oklahoma with a Vet Practice now based in Altus. And he helps CR and Kirk in getting the story out on Premium Natural Beef. Click on the LINK below for our Beef Buzz for today- which has part one of our look at the Premium Natural Beef story- our Beef Buzz shows are heard on great radio stations across the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- and previous Beef Buzzes can be accessed on our website- just click on the Beef Buzz button on the left hand side of any page on www.OKlahomaFarmReport.Com.

Click here for today's Beef Buzz featuring Charles Freeman talking with us about Premium Standard Beef.

Cattle on Feed Today- Good Friday Holiday Tomorrow
USDA will offer their regular monthly Cattle on Feed Report this afternoon- here's what we had from Allendale on their predictions from earlier this week-
"March Placements are expected to be 1.3% larger than last year. The sharp rise in fed cattle prices in March, averaging $7 higher than February, likely brought in a few extra feeders. Further incentive may have come from the $130 per head profits from finished cattle leaving feedlots. Cattle placed in February will be marketed from August through October.
"Allendale anticipates a Marketing total 2.8% larger than March of 2010. Slaughter levels will go from slightly higher than last year this spring then balloon to sharply higher in the summer when large winter placements come due." Rich Nelson concludes by predicting total Cattle on Feed as of April 1 will be 4.6% larger than last year.

We will have Ed Richards and Tom Leffler looking at the actual numbers this afternoon, and that report will be found on the front page our website later this afternoon under the "Top Agricultural News" section. Look for that report.

Good Friday holiday comes up tomorrow- while Uncle Same does not recognize the holiday officially- the markets do and will be closed after today's trade until Monday morning. We will have regular reports on our radio network across the state- as heard on 39 radio stations in Oklahoma and one each in Kansas, Texas, New Mexico and Missouri.
We will have an abbreviated email report tomorrow and also an abbreviated report on Monday before we get fully back into gear next Tuesday. Of course, we will have the important updates of the day in the email- and details up on our website, www.OklahomaFarmReport.Com as well.

Our thanks to Midwest Farms Shows, PCOM, P & K Equipment/ P & K Wind Energy, Johnston Enterprises, American Farmers & Ranchers, KIS Futures and Big Iron Online Auctions 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- FREE!

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

Click here to check out WWW.OklahomaFarmReport.Com

Let's Check the Markets!
We've had requests to include Canola prices for your convenience here- and we will be doing so on a regular basis. Current cash price for Canola is $11.15 per bushel, while the 2011 New Crop contracts for Canola are now available are $11.30 per bushel- delivered to local participating elevators that are working with PCOM.

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:
Our Daily Market Wrapup from the Radio Oklahoma Network with Ed Richards and Tom Leffler- analyzing the Futures Markets from the previous Day-
Ron on RON Markets as heard on K101 mornings with cash and futures reviewed- includes where the Cash Cattle market stands, the latest Feeder Cattle Markets Etc.
Previous Day's Wheat Market Recap- Two Pager From The Kansas City Board of Trade looks at all three US Wheat Futures Exchanges with extra info on Hard Red Winter Wheat and the why of that day's market.
Daily Oklahoma Cash Grain Prices- As Reported by the Oklahoma Dept. of Agriculture. <
The National Daily Feeder & Stocker Cattle Summary- as prepared by USDA.
The National Daily Slaughter Cattle Summary- as prepared by USDA.
Finally, Here is the Daily Volume and Price Summary from the Texas Cattle Feeders Association.

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

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