Cattle Update: Staying In Business – Marketing
The ongoing drought conditions add to the challenges faced on Mississippi beef cattle operations. Two categories of questions from beef producers make up the majority of questions coming in to Extension offices in recent years: marketing questions and nutrition questions. Both of these topics have a major impact on beef cattle operational profitability. Some key points are offered to help Mississippians keep the cattle business going through challenging production conditions.
Cattle producers must market to stay in business. Breeders who take the approach that they do not wish to sell any good animals and only wish to sell a few culls will have difficulty marketing for profitability. Livestock marketing columnist Keith Evans once stated that, “The quickest way to kill a poor quality product is to advertise it heavily.” In other words, it is important to develop a reputation for good quality cattle. A quality product is something worth marketing.
Using Downed or Damaged Corn
Bruce Anderson, Extension Forage Specialist, university of Nebraska
While wind, hail, floods and drought may have ruined some corn fields, they may still have value as a source of forage. Before considering any type of harvest, check with both your insurance agent and local FSA office so you don’t disqualify yourself from any supplemental payments.
If your corn is still standing, it can be chopped for silage or cut and baled as hay. It’s really important to get the moisture content right for either harvest option and getting it dry enough for hay may be especially difficult. Tall plants are difficult to mow, stalks need to be run through a conditioner, and windrows need a long time to dry. Remaining ears are especially hard to dry so they tend to spoil inside the bale.
Focus on Basics for Success in Seedstock Business
by: Eric Grant
Success in the seedstock business isn’t just about selling cattle anymore. It’s about providing a wide array of products and services – and developing unforeseen value-added opportunities for the people who buy your bulls.
Most progressive seedstock producers spend a lot of time talking and listening to their bull buying clients. The information they gather – and the connections they make — are very valuable to the success of both parties.
“As a seedstock producer, you need to ask yourself this question every day: Do you know what makes your clients happy and keeps them profitable? You should realize that bull buyers have many options when it comes to buying their bulls. Your job is to constantly find new ways of providing better service to them,” says Dr. John Evans, who is a project manager for California Department of Agriculture and one-time manager of Oklahoma State University’s central bull test station.
Support for farm bill split among livestock groups
by Peter Shinn
The livestock industry appears to be divided on the House version of the 2007 farm bill. Major pork and dairy groups have unqualified praise for the measure while beef cattle groups have a more two-sided assessment.
The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) is praising the House farm bill, approved by a 40-vote margin Friday, as one that “will help pork producers remain competitive in the global marketplace.” NPPC President Jill Appell said in a release issued Friday her organization wanted a farm bill that, among other things, “protects producers from initiatives that would adversely affect their livelihoods, such as mandates on production practices.” Appell said the farm bill passed the House “achieves those goals.”
Similarly, the National Milk Producers Federation (NFMPF) said in a statement Friday the House farm bill will help keep the dairy industry “vibrant in the future.” According to the NMPF statement, the House farm bill did no less than include “all of the major elements that the National Milk Producers Federation had sought when the process of writing a farm bill in Congress began earlier this year.”
Cattle producers work with agencies to manage grasslands
By ANDREA JOHNSON
Farm and Ranch Guide
There are three tools available for grassland management – burning, haying and grazing.
Several agencies are turning to grazing to help reduce unwanted weeds and improve habitat for flora and fauna in central Minnesota.
Representatives of three agencies – U.S. Fish & Wildlife, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, and The Nature Conservancy – are working with cattle producers Dan and Linda Jenniges, of rural Glenwood.
COOL for our U.S. beef customers: A reality
By DANNI BEER and LEO MCDONNELL
An Open Letter to Cattle Producers:
In 2002 the U.S. Congress mandated country of origin labeling (COOL) for beef, lamb, pork, fish, perishable agriculture commodities and peanuts. The journey to that point was a long and arduous process during which U.S. producers and consumers stood the test, stayed engaged and overcame the many obstacles thrown up by COOL’s opponents.
It was a sweet victory in 2002, but many of us knew the battle was far from over. Passage of the law was but one step. Rule-writing, implementation and funding were the steps yet to come. As time went on, it became obvious that COOL’s opponents would take every opportunity to delay implementation of the law, and they were successful. Funding for implementation was withheld by Congress during the appropriations process.
Modified human vaccine may protect cattle from TB
A vaccine to protect cattle against highly infectious bovine tuberculosis is to be tested in national herds within three to five years, following successful trials in laboratory animals.
Government vets plan to use a modified form of the human BCG vaccine to protect cattle from the disease, which was responsible for at least 20,000 animals being sent for slaughter last year.
The disease was almost eradicated from the national herd in the 1980s but there has been a dramatic resurgence since, with cases rising 14% year on year. The disease cost the taxpayer £80m last year in compensation paid to farmers.