The Cow/calf Producer’s Role in Assuring Safety from BSE
Dr. Glen Selk. University of Oklahoma
The goal of beef producers throughout the United States is supplying safe, wholesome, high quality beef to consumers.
Because BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopathy) was recently identified in one animal in Northern Canada, the disease has again gained attention from the U.S. news media. They usually refer to BSE as “mad cow disease” and are asking if the disease is in the United States, or “could this happen here”? The U.S. meat industry has a “triple firewall strategy” in place against BSE, which includes: 1) import controls; 2) surveillance; and 3) feeding controls. As cattle producers, we are directly a part of the feeding controls.
Jolley: Talking About…COOL, Corn, “Renewable Fuels”
“Bottom line is that country-of-origin labeling is the law. It’s been delayed. It will not be delayed anymore. We are going to figure out how to implement it.”
(Source: Clarion Ledger, March 18, 2007)
Collin Peterson, (D-Minnesota) House Agriculture Committee Chairman talking about his plan to link the labeling program to the national animal identification system.
Manage Soil for Fertility in Pastures
by: Dennis Hancock
When hay is removed from a hayfield, it makes sense to think that a substantial amount of nutrients are being carted off in each bale. However, when cattle graze in a pasture, it is reasonable to expect that most of those nutrients are recycled back to the pasture. After all, a 500 pound calf contains about 12 pounds of nitrogen, 3.5 pounds of phosphorus and 0.75 pounds of potassium. But, like most things in life, it’s more complicated than that.
Grazing animals do, in fact, return most of the nutrients they consume back to the pasture. Unfortunately, these nutrients are taken from large areas (grazed area) and deposited in concentrated patches on small areas of the pasture. Often times, we see this problem because of disproportionate growth around urine and dung patches.
Farm: Good reminders on proper cattle handling
By MARK MECHLING
Zanesville Times Recorder
Feeder calf production is one of the most important agricultural enterprises in eastern and southern Ohio. Having the proper handling facilities is critical in dealing with cattle safely and efficiently. The following information from University of Minnesota’s Beef Team provides some good reminders on using the proper cattle handling facilities.
Cattle handling facilities are an essential part of any cattle operation. Producers who want to improve cattle health as well as marketing and production (along with family and worker relations) must invest in some type of livestock handling facilities.
Texan’s firing produces internal beefs for cattle group
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
It’s a range war, but this time it’s not ranchers versus sheepherders or sodbusters. It’s cattlemen against cattlemen.
R-Calf USA, a 7-year-old cattle ranching group based in Billings, Mont., with a protectionist bent against beef imports, on Feb. 8 dumped its president, Chuck Kiker, three weeks into the Texan’s second term
Farming is in their blood
By Mark Hofmann
A Fayette County farmer, who’s been working his trade all of his life, reflects on the changes in farming and his other ventures as a land developer in the real estate field.
James Work said he was raised with livestock farming as a child and he stayed with farming during the 80 years of his life.
Work is currently president of Work Farms.
University Farm offers hands-on experience
Driving south down Interstate 55, students driving back to school from the north after a long break from school keep an eye out for it. Some even wait for its smell. It is white, red and reminds students their Bloomington-Normal exit is only minutes away.
Though many students have seen the University Farm, it is rarely talked about. Students know little about the landmark that covers approximately 610 acres of land.
Livestock conference to look at effect of ethanol on beef industry
Montana State University
BOZEMAN — The growing demand for ethanol and corn is having a big effect on the U.S. cattle industry, say organizers of this year’s Montana Livestock Forum and Nutrition Conference to be held April 10 and 11 in Bozeman.
“The change that the entire beef industry is talking about is the explosive growth of the ethanol industry and its effects on the price of corn for livestock,” said John Paterson, Montana State University Extension beef specialist. “As the price of corn has increased, so has the price of other feedstuffs. It is becoming more difficult for producers to stay on top of the variety of issues.”
Study into BSE tests
EUROPE: Report into BSE batch testing finds discrepancies.
A study by European Union scientists into different batch tests for BSE has found variations in standards and results.
Experts from the Scientific Panel on Biological Hazards (BIOHAZ Panel) were reviewing a report on batch testing data from the Community Reference Laboratory (CRL).
It concluded that not all of the nine tests evaluated performed equally.
Canada blames suspect feed for latest BSE case
OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canada’s ninth case of mad cow disease since 2003 — announced in February — was most likely caused by suspect feed, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency said on Monday.
Canada blamed previous cases of BSE, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy, on feed produced before Ottawa’s 1997 ban on cattle feed that contained ingredients made from rendered cattle and other ruminants.
On-the-farm biodiesel system to be featured
by Bob Meyer
The Wisconsin Public Service Farm Show runs this Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at the E.A.A. Grounds in Oshkosh. Each year, along with the latest in farm equipment and technology, the show features daily seminars. On Tuesday morning, the first seminar will feature Tom Perlick of Perlick Farms LLC talking about how he makes biodiesel on his farm. Perlick says he has been studying the idea for a couple of years but the final straw came in the fall of 2006. “When I ran out of prepaid diesel and I was combining and I got stuck paying $3.50 a gallon for diesel, I was burning better than 12 gallons an hour and I said there has got to be a better way.”
What he has is an expeller, built in Germany. It uses a mechanical cold-press process to expel oil from the seed, “So you get what they call SVO, straight vegetable oil and meal.” Perlick says the process gets about 75 to 80% of the oil so they have found it more efficient to press sunflowers and canola instead of soybeans. “We get about 103 gallons of biodiesel out of an acre of sunflowers.”
U.S. cattle on feed down four percent
UNITED STATES: A USDA report says cattle on feed on 1 March 2007 were down four percent from a year earlier.
Cattle and calves on feed for slaughter market in the United States for feedlots with capacity of 1,000 or more head totaled 11.6 million head on March 1, 2007, according to a report released last week by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS).
That’s four percent below March 1, 2006 but four percent above March 1, 2005.
Placements in feedlots during February totaled 1.66 million, four percent above 2006 and nine percent above 2005. Net placements were 1.58 million.
Cloned Cattle Yield Test-Tube Herds for U.S. Sirloins, Milk
By Catherine Larkin
Mark Walton, head of the world’s largest animal cloning company, sees his biotechnology lab in Austin, Texas, as the next frontier in food production.
Nine months ago, scientists at Walton’s closely held ViaGen Inc. extracted genetic information from customers’ prized cattle and transferred the DNA into bovine eggs to make embryos. Now, 75 miles away at the 300-acre Hillman Ranch in the town of Cameron, surrogate mother cows, carrying the embryos, are giving birth to calves that are clones of the clients’ finest cattle.
Producers Applaud Efforts on Superfund Clarification
U.S. cattle producers are applauding the introduction of legislation supported by 66 members of Congress, to clarify that livestock manure is not a hazardous substance under Superfund laws.
In recent years, opponents of animal agriculture have suggested Superfund laws should be applied to manure from animal feeding, farming and ranching operations. (Superfund is the common name for the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, CERCLA of 1980, and Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act, EPCRA of 1986.)
Monocropping for ethanol plant would hurt farmlands
By Barney Lavin
Journal Times (WI)
I farm 300 acres in the town of Dover. My ancestors came this area after they left Ireland. I am the fifth generation of Lavins to farm this land since it was homesteaded back in the 1840s. My great-great grandfather Martin Lavin built the first barn with his own hands around 1850. It is still strong and sturdy and I still use it today. That is because my grandfathers built it to last. He cared about the future generations. I have maintained it, because I too care about the future.