~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Thursday September 17, 2009A service of Johnston Enterprises, P & K Equipment/ P & K Wind Energy and American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company!
-- Vilsack Draws Good Crowd in his El Reno Appearance as a Part of the Obama Administration Rural Tour
-- Congressman Lucas Says He Hopes Vilsack Actually Listened to "His" Rural Folks from Oklahoma
-- OFB's Mike Spradling Tells Secretary Vilsack- Empower Rural America- Don't Grow Government
-- JBS S.A. to Hold Most of Pilgrim's Pride Stock
-- AFR Calls for Action on Wheat Investigation Findings
-- Staying Ahead of Parasites in Your Cattle Herd Pays Dividends
-- Ratliff Ranch Gets Ready for Their Fall Production Sale This Saturday, September 19
-- 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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Vilsack Draws Good Crowd in his El Reno Appearance as a Part of the Obama Administration Rural Tour
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack was in El Reno, Oklahoma, yesterday as part of the Obama Administration's Rural Tour. In June, President Obama announced that Secretary Vilsack will lead the Administration's Rural Tour to visit rural communities in states throughout the country. Secretary Vilsack is scheduled to lead Rural Tour events with other top administration officials over the coming weeks in Nebraska and New Mexico.
In checking the Tweets coming from the event- Ryan McMullen, our State Director for Rural Development reported a great crowd- but apologized for not sending more Tweets during the event. His explanation was that the boss (Secretary Vilsack) was looking at him too much during the event so not much time could be spent texting updates to Twitter.
Just before the start of the event on Wednesday- the Radio Oklahoma Network had the chance to visit with the Secretary about a variety of issues. He explained it is mainly a listening and learning tour to find out what is on people's minds. Vilsack said he wanted to highlight the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act projects and how they could improve communities in Oklahoma and benefit people throughout rural America. The Secretary mentions initiatives started by USDA and their benefit, one being expanding rural broadband access allowing rural businesses to reconnect with global markets, and to end in his words, "Our addiction to foreign oil".
Our News Director for RON, Rex Oates, conducted the interview while yours truly is out of state for some vacation time with my lovely wife Jan- and Oates talked with Vilsack about a variety of issues, including Climate Change and more. Click on the link below and you can hear our full interview with the Secretary from Wednesday.
Congressman Lucas Says He Hopes Vilsack Actually Listened to "His" Rural Folks from Oklahoma
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~An editorial from Ranking Member Frank Lucas was published yesterday in The Oklahoman. In the editorial, Rep. Lucas welcomed Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to Oklahoma, and urged him to listen and learn from Oklahomans' common sense approach to government and economics.
Congressman Lucas said in his comments supplied to us by his Media team that he hopes that the Secretary will pay attention to what Lucas found during his August Town Hall Meetings- angry and frustrated Americans regarding the direction of the country. "They are opposed to stimulus packages and bailouts that we cannot afford. They are opposed to the Democrats' national energy tax that will cause fuel and electricity prices to skyrocket and destroy the budgets of households and small businesses. For example, according to recent studies, residents in Oklahoma can expect their electricity rates to increase by nearly $300 million if the Democrats' national energy tax becomes law."
You can read the full set of comments from the top Republican on the House Ag Committee, who did not accompany the Secretary to El Reno yesterday- even though it is a part of the Third District that is the District that Congressman Lucas represents. Click on the link below for those comments as found on our website.
OFB's Mike Spradling Tells Secretary Vilsack- Empower Rural America- Don't Grow Government
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~During the USDA rural development listening session in El Reno, Mike Spradling, Sand Springs farmer and Oklahoma Farm Bureau president, told USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack he is concerned about a trend that he has noticed. Spradling calls it a form of reverse osmosis seems to be occurring in rural America today where agriculture producers are becoming more dependent on the health of the overall rural economy.
"American agriculture is a key component of rural communities, yet agriculture as an industry is becoming more reliant on the greater rural economy than rural communities are dependent on farmers," Spradling said. "Averaged across all farms, 89 percent of farm income now comes from off-farm sources."
Spradling had several ideas to address this lack of empowerment for rural America. We have that full list in a story that is our top story this Thursday morning on our website- and we have it linked for you below. Click on the link below and check it out.
JBS S.A. to Hold Most of Pilgrim's Pride Stock
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~JBS S.A. will soon hold a major portion of the new common stock of Pilgrim's Pride. Pilgrim's Pride Corporation says under a reorganization plan filed under Chapter 11 bankruptcy the company will sell 64 percent of its new common stock to JBS S.A. for 800-million dollars in cash. The overall transaction represents an enterprise value of some 2.8-billion dollars. If approved, the deal would make JBS USA a direct rival to Tyson Foods, currently the only major U.S. meat company to produce beef, pork and poultry.
Pilgrim said proceeds from the sale of stock will be used to fund distributions to creditors in cash or new notes. Meanwhile, existing shareholders will own 36 percent of the reorganized firm. With the Pilgrim's deal, JBS becomes majority owner of the nation's largest poultry producer.
Pilgrim's President and CEO Don Jackson believes his company - is positioned to emerge from bankruptcy as a stronger, more efficient competitor. He proclaims - we have returned to profitability, the quality of our asset base has improved significantly and we are gaining additional business. Pilgrim's expects to emerge from bankruptcy before the end of December, a year after it originally filed for Chapter 11 protection.
AFR Calls for Action on Wheat Investigation Findings
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~As Oklahoma wheat producers begin putting a new crop in the ground over the next month, American Farmers & Ranchers (AFR) a general farm organization and mutual insurance company, praised the investigative findings issued by a U.S. Senate committee which found excessive speculation in the wheat market hurting farmers.
"We commend Senator Tom Coburn and his colleagues of the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations for their work to get to the bottom of why we have seen such a spread in recent years between futures prices and cash prices for wheat," said Terry Detrick, AFR President. "Such a span of disparity should not have existed in a marketplace intended to provide protection for risks. The process worked right the opposite. Farmers, grain elevators, processors and U.S. consumers experienced significant uncalled for costs and price risks."
Detrick called on the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) to
take heed to the findings issued by the Senate Committee and continue to
rein in commodity index traders and restrict excessive speculation that
have disrupted commodity prices. While acknowledging that speculation must
occur for the market to function, Detrick said speculation should have
some limits and be closely monitored.
Staying Ahead of Parasites in Your Cattle Herd Pays Dividends
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Staying ahead of parasites in your cow-calf operation costs- but it pays back more- that's the contention of Dr. Frank Hurtig, Director of Large Animal Vet Services for Merial Animal Health. Merial has one of the best known brand names in the parasite control business for cattle- Ivomec. We get the fall parasite control story today from Dr. Hurtig on our Beef Buzz.
Dr. Hurtig reminds cattlemen that the value of using parasite control measures is worth as much as $201 per cow annually, based on research conducted by Iowa State University. Dr. Hurtig says that it's not just regular worm control that needs to be considered- but for those that calve in the fall- liver fluke control also needs to be factored in here in the southern plains.
You can get the full explanation of the value of parasite control from Dr. Hurtig by clicking on the link below- and jumping to our Thursday Beef Buzz- available on our website and the same program that we offer to our stations across the state on the Radio Oklahoma Network.
Ratliff Ranch Gets Ready for Their Fall Production Sale This Saturday, September 19
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Fall Event at Ratliff Ranches near Vinita is coming this Saturday, September 19, with a 1000 head of top notch genetics to be offered. The sale begins at 11:00 AM, and will include their bull sale, then registered females and finally the commercial females.
Christy Collins says of the Ratliff 2009 offering "Ratcliff Ranches is a program that has the ability to offer good cattle and good genetics in volume. The large number of cattle on hand, make this sale environment, "advantage buyer!" It offers you a great deal of opportunity. This offering will sell to the commercial operation seeking quality in volume and to the seed stock enthusiast looking to build an elite herd or market these cattle individually."
Click on the link below for more information on the upcoming sale at the Ratliff Ranch- or you can call 918-256-5561 for more information.
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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 $7.55 per bushel, while the 2010 New Crop contracts for Canola are now available are $7.65 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:
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