~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Tuesday January 6, 2009!A service of Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, KIS Futures and American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company!
-- Surprise Resignation- Tyson's Dick Bond Leaves- Effective Yesterday
-- Spradling Sees "Pot Holes" and Opportunities Ahead in 2009
-- Missouri Oilseed Cooperative Offering Shares- Plans Northeast Oklahoma Meeting This Week
-- Drudge Report Elevates Visibility of the possible "Cow Tax"
-- What About a Fifty Year Farm Bill?
-- Speaking of Conservation and Today's Production Agriculture- No Till on the Plains Set for Late This Month
-- Vilsack Confirmation Set for Next Week.
-- 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 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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Surprise Resignation- Tyson's Dick Bond Leaves- Effective Yesterday
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Tyson Foods Inc. Chief Executive Dick Bond said on Monday he was leaving the world's largest meat producer, effective immediately, a move that surprised analysts and sent Tyson shares down 6 percent. Bond, 61, had been president and CEO since May 2006 and had been a member of the board since 2001. Analysts were caught off guard, saying the company appeared well positioned to withstand the current pressures on the meat industry.
Meatingplace .Com quotes Christina McGlone, Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. analyst who told them ""The fact that it was done rather abruptly makes one wonder if there was a disagreement between Dick and the (Tyson) family. First, you wonder what led to a sudden departure. And second, who's going to replace him on a permanent basis? In the absence of facts, you're left to speculate."
In 2008, Tyson and other meat companies were hurt by high feed prices early in the year and, later, slowing economies around the world. Tyson's earnings fell 68 percent to $86 million in the fiscal year ended in September. Meat industry conditions appear to be improving, with feed costs down from the highs in early 2008 and producers cutting production, which should lift meat prices in 2009.
"After seven years of helping lead or leading the world's largest meat company, I have decided it is in both my best interest personally and the best interest of the company for me to move on and pursue other interests," Bond said in a statement.
Spradling Sees "Pot Holes" and Opportunities Ahead in 2009
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~This will be a challenging year full of opportunities and pot holes for agricultural producers and consumers alike. That's the assessment of Mike Spradling, president of Oklahoma Farm Bureau, the state's largest farm organization. In the coming months, Spradling expects to see opportunities for farmers to sell their commodities for a profit. "To survive a volatile economy, producers will have to be shrewd marketers," Spradling said. "I expect the market to provide windows of profit opportunity, but at the same time pot holes of losses."
The agricultural leader acknowledges every producer's break even points are different, but just like in 2008, large price swings will force them to study the markets closely. "Successful farming is often a combination of good timing and good weather," Spradling said. "We can't control the weather, but with skill and a little luck we can grab a profit out of the market." Spradling expects farmers and ranchers to be faced with unpredictable and wildly fluctuating input costs, especially in the energy sector.
We have more with Mike Spradling of Tulsa County who leads the general farm organization at our website- WWW.OklahomaFarmReport.Com. Click on the link below to take a look.
Missouri Oilseed Cooperative Offering Shares- Plans Northeast Oklahoma Meeting This Week
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Missouri based Prairie Pride, Inc. is a new-generation, producer cooperative that is converting soybeans into bio-diesel fuel and soy meal. They have completed construction of a new soybean extraction/biodiesel refinery facility at Deerfield, in West Central Missouri.
According to their website- which we have linked below- they have reopened the sale of shares in the cooperative through the end of this month.
They are planning a series of meetings over this week and next week- mostly in Missouri- with a couple of meetings in southeast Kansas and one in northeast Oklahoma. The Oklahoma meeting will be at Lorene's Restaurant in Fairland, Oklahoma at 1:30 pm this Friday, January 9, 2009.
Our thanks to Brent Rendel for passing this info along to us- and if you have any interest- there are phone numbers on the link below for you to call and ask your questions. This is a cooperative already up and running with what is apparently a successful business model. They are looking for farmers that want to have some exposure to biodiesel in their operation. If you have interst- Investigate closely before you get involved.
Drudge Report Elevates Visibility of the possible "Cow Tax"
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Farm Bureau raised the Red Flag as they warned of this being just over the horizon- even as agriculture faces an administration that some fear will be very unsympathetic to production agriculture in the days to come. The Drudge Report has linked on their left column a story (complete with a bovine chewing their cud) about the so called "cow tax" that opens as follows:
"Call this one of the newest and innovative ways your government has come up with to battle greenhouse gas emissions. Indirectly it could be considered a cheeseburger tax, but one of the suggestions offered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in its Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) for regulating greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act is to levy a tax on livestock."
Rick Krause, senior director of congressional relations for the American Farm Bureau, warned it's certainly feasible - especially based on the rhetoric of President-elect Barack Obama and the use of the EPA to combat global warming. Such action by an Obama administration would take an act of Congress for livestock to be exempt. "The new president has been on record as saying that he really supports regulating greenhouse gases out of the Clean Air Act," Krause said to the Business & Media Institute. "So, we really have to keep an eye on it. Legislation would really be the only way to exempt it at this point - the cow tax."
What About a Fifty Year Farm Bill?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~It was an interesting editorial that was pointed out to us yesterday morning in the electronic edition of the New York Times. It is entitled "A Fifty Year Farm Bill" and was written by two gentlemen- one I know- Wendell Berry and the other I don't know- Wes Jackson. Berry is a long time opponent of anything modern on the farm- a forty acres and a mule kind of a guy and Jackson is listed as being from Salina, Kansas and The Land Institute.
They beat up on conservation efforts in this country and bemoan soil loss and the industralization of agriculture. One paragraph they write sums up their complaints: "To the problem of soil loss, the industrialization of agriculture has added pollution by toxic chemicals, now universally present in our farmlands and streams. Some of this toxicity is associated with the widely acclaimed method of minimum tillage. We should not poison our soils to save them."
They turn around at that point and call for something that might be
very interesting indeed- the idea of developing our major crops we grow
for food and fiber into perennials. Berry and Jackson claim "In fact,
research in Canada, Australia, China and the United States over the last
30 years suggests that perennialization of the major grain crops like
wheat, rice, sorghum and sunflowers can be developed in the foreseeable
Speaking of Conservation and Today's Production Agriculture- No Till on the Plains Set for Late This Month
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The premiere crop production conference in the Midwest comes to the Bicentennial Center in Salina, Kansas January 27 - 28. The 13th annual No-till on the Plains Winter Conference has evolved into the most respected "continuous no-till" conference and trade show of its type in North America.
Take advantage of the early discount of $150 ($200 after Jan. 15) to reserve your spot at the 2009 Winter Conference, where you will have the opportunity to visit with other no-tillers from various regions. This year several "producer speakers" - each in a different stage of continuous no-till (CNT) with a variety of unique conditions - will offer presentations. In addition, several no-tillage experts will engage the crowd. The speaking lineup features Kirk Gadzia, NM; Paul Jasa, UNL, NE; Steve Melvin, UNL , NE; Kenneth Miller and Marlyn Richter, ND; Phil Needham, KY; Moe Russell, IA; Ray Ward, NE; Brian & Keith Berns, NE; Humberto Blanco, KSU, KS; Tom Cannon, OK; Gail Fuller, KS; Stuart Hoff, UNL, NE; Andy Holzwarth, KS; Bill Kuenstler and Jerry Lemunyon, NRCS, TX; Gary Maskus, CO; Lance Russell, Hays, KS; Mark Watson, NE; and Marty Williams, OK. These experts are extremely knowledgeable, and growers will have the opportunity to ask questions, share trade secrets and interact with other attendees, participants and presenters.
Brian Lindley, Executive Director of No-till on the Plains, comments, "Our theme for the conference this year is 'Pursuit of the Ideal.' This is a topic not unfamiliar to most no-tillers since we realize that we have yet to attain the ultimate yield goals. While most conventional tillage practices have stagnated and their yields have plateaued, continuous no-tillers know we have yet to realize our full potential. This is why we must keep learning from the very best the industry has to offer -- producers who are maximizing rotations, crop sequencing practices, fertility, nutrient cycling, and management skills, while achieving an overall food quality that has not been surpassed."
Vilsack Confirmation Set for Next Week.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Chairman of the Senate Ag Committee says his committee will conduct a hearing to review the nomination of former Governor Tom Vilsack to be the next Secretary of Agriculture. Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa says the confirmation hearing will be held next Wednesday, January 14th. This hearing falls in the middle of other key hearings of interest to agriculture.
Tom Daschle is first up this Thursday. The former Senate Ag Committee member and Senate Majority Leader has been selected to be Secretary of Health and Human Services. Then - next Tuesday (January 13) - the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will review Energy Secretary-designate Steven Chu. That same committee will hear from Interior Secretary-designate Ken Salazar next Thursday (January 15).
Our thanks to KIS Futures, Producers Cooperative Oil Mill and AFR for their support of our daily Farm News Update. For your convenience, we have our sponsors' websites linked at the top of the email- check them 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!
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.
Let's Check the Markets!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Both the Oklahoma City and Joplin Livestock Markets had good sized runs and higher prices after a two week hiatus for the holidays. Yearling cattle at the Oklahoma National Stockyards jumped $4 to $7 higher, while calves were up by $5 to $10 per hundredweight. Meanwhile, Joplin also enjoyed higher prices with their calf sales $5 to $12 up. Click on the name of the market to see their Monday report in full.
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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