Daily Archives: January 14, 2006

Tyson to close two older meat plants in Iowa

Tyson to close two older meat plants in Iowa
Tyson to close two older meat plants in Iowa

Journal-Star, Lincoln, NE
SPRINGDALE, Ark. — Tyson Foods Inc. plans to close two older meat plants in Iowa with a total of 400 workers. The company said Friday the plants at Independence and Oelwein, which produce sliced luncheon meats and chopped ham, are to close March 17.The move will mean a second-quarter charge of $16 million, or 3 cents per share, Tyson said. The company said reduced costs from the closure will save between $15 million and $20 million a year, the company said. The plant at Independence has been in operation for more than 50 years and has about 300 workers. Oelwein’s plant has about 90 workers and has been operating for 40 years. The plants in northeast Iowa will be sold, Tyson said.Meanwhile, Tyson said it would invest $30 million in expanded bacon production at its Cherokee, Iowa, plant.The company’s properties in Nebraska include offices, plants, warehouses, tanneries and other operations in Columbus, Dakota City, Lexington, Madison, Norfolk, Omaha, West Point and York.

Bovine tuberculosis and its impact on food safety and hunter safety

Bovine tuberculosis and its impact on food safety and hunter safety
By JAMIE LARSON, U of M Beef Team,
Regional Extension EducatorThursday, January 5, 2006 4:10 PM CST
After the discovery of five beef herds that tested positive for bovine tuberculosis (TB) in northwestern Minnesota, there has been a common concern among livestock producers and consumers of how this affects the safety of our food supply.While it has been quite awhile since beef producers in the upper Midwest have had to think about the impacts of bovine TB, there was a time when the disease was common. Prior to this year, the last known case of bovine TB in Minnesota was in 1971.
So we do know some things about food safety that we should be concerned about, but also some things we do not need to be concerned about.Bovine TB caused by the bacteria Mycobacterium bovis is a respiratory disease of cattle. It is a chronic, slowly progressive disease that does not spread easily. Infected animals may be capable of transmitting an infection to other animals even if they appear healthy.

South Korea-U.S. Agreement To End Beef Ban Seen As First Step

In addition to being the greatest cause of baby calf mortality, calving difficulty markedly reduces reproductive performance during the next breeding season. Cattle suffering from calving difficulty have been reported to have pregnancy rates decreased by 16% and to calve 13 days later at the next calving. Results from a Montana study (Doornbos, et al., 1984) showed that heifers receiving assistance in early stage 2 of parturition returned to heat earlier in the post-calving period and had higher pregnancy rates than heifers receiving traditionally accepted obstetric assistance. In this study heifers were either assisted when the fetal membranes (water bag) appeared (EARLY) or were allowed to progress normally and assisted only if calving was not completed within two hours of the appearance of the water bag (LATE).

Heifers that were allowed to endure a prolonged labor had a 20% lower rate of cycling at the start of the next breeding season. In addition, the rebreeding percentage was 17% lower than the counterparts that were given assistance in the first hour of labor.

Prolonged deliveries of baby calves (in excess of 1 to 1.5 hours) often result in weakened calves and reduced rebreeding performance in young cows!

Source: Glenn Selk, OSU Extension Animal Reproduction Specialist

South Korea-U.S. Agreement To End Beef Ban Seen As First Step

South Korea-U.S. Agreement To End Beef Ban Seen As First Step

SEOUL – Jan. 13, 2006 – South Korea announced today it will accept U.S. beef, ending a two-year ban.

“The government of South Korea, through its Animal Health Committee and Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has completed its own vigorous review of U.S. beef and found it safe,” USMEF President and CEO Philip M. Seng said in a statement released in Seoul. “Today’s announcement that South Korea is ready to again open to U.S. beef should be the signal to South Korean consumers that they can be confident in our products.”

South Korea banned U.S. beef after a case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy was found in a imported cow in December 2003. That year, South Korea was the third largest market for U.S. beef and beef variety meat exports at 246,958 metric tons valued at $815.8 million.

The agreement announced today limits U.S. imports to boneless beef from cattle under 30 months of age with specific risk materials, such as spinal cord and brain, removed in accordance to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) safety protocols.

Variety meat, which made up about 14 percent U.S. beef product exported to South Korea in 2003, is excluded. Other criteria apparently established in the agreement will be included in a new beef verification program. U.S. beef exports will likely arrive in South Korea in late March once the export verification program is finalized.

USMEF-Korea research shows South Korean traders, retailers and restaurants are ready to welcome back U.S. beef. The number of South Korean consumers who said they would buy U.S. beef has increased from 19 percent in February 2004 to 35 percent in July 2005.

“For nearly 18 years, South Korean consumers have appreciated the great taste, consistent high quality and great value they have found in U.S. beef. We look forward to the day very soon now when they will be able to have this experience again,” Seng said.

The U.S. Meat Export Federation is the trade association responsible for developing international markets for the U.S. red meat industry and is funded by USDA, exporting companies, and the beef, pork, lamb, corn, sorghum and soybean checkoff programs.

Source: USMEF