Daily Archives: January 4, 2008

Andy Peek, Western Video Market President Passes

Andy Peek, Western Video Market President Passes

Andy Peek, President of Western Video Market and Shasta Livestock Auction Yard, passed away this morning (Jan. 3rd) at his home in Cottonwood, California.

In 2003, the two companies sold more than $300 Million worth of cattle at auction. Andy is an auction professional who has been in the business of managing auctions for more than 40 years and has been involved in the livestock industry his entire life. He ran approximately 5000 head of grass cattle on ranches in California, Nevada and Oregon. He had encyclopedic knowledge of the Western cattle business, its ranches and the people who own them.

     Andy has served on the board of the national Livestock Marketing Association and as president of the California Livestock Marketing Association and the Shasta District Fair. He is a member of Farm Bureau and the California Cattlemen’s Association, serving as Director-at-Large for Auction Markets.

A celebration of Andy’s life is scheduled for Wednesday, January 9th at the Shasta District Fairgrounds in Anderson, California.

Vacuum Preservation, A Method for Storing Wet Distillers Grains

Vacuum Preservation, A Method for Storing Wet Distillers Grains

Paul Walker, Illinois State University

High moisture corn gluten feed (CGF) and wet distillers grain (DG) are excellent feedstuffs for inclusion into cattle diets. Because these two feedstuffs typically range in dry matter content between 40% and 60%, the length of storage time until feeding without spoilage is limited to 5-7 days when air temperatures are above 70º F and 7-10 days when air temperatures are below 45º F. Consequently, cattle producers with smaller herd sizes and limited daily consumption of DG or CGF have had few choices for utilizing these two feedstuffs. The options have included: 1) hauling smaller loads of DG or CGF from the plant to the farm to minimize spoilage have ultimately resulted in higher transportation costs offsetting the lower purchase cost of DG or CGF, or 2) ensiling the CGF or DG with another feedstuff such as dry corn silage or small grain straws. Ensiling CGF or DG by themselves has proven problematic in both upright and horizontal silos. With a modified bagger, CGF can be stored in a silage bag; but the consistency of DG does not lend itself to bagging.


Lime is critical for high yielding pastureland

Lime is critical for high yielding pastureland

Delta Farm Press

Are you losing extra yield from pasture and forage crops each season due to low soil pH?

“Lime needs to be applied on acid soils if you want a well-balanced fertility program and highest yields,” said Mark Keaton, Baxter County staff chair with the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service.

Yields can be increased on many Arkansas farms by correcting acid soil conditions with lime. Most grasses will produce top yield on soils that are only moderately acid or slightly acid.

Most legumes, on the other hand, grow best on soils that are slightly acid to neutral in pH reaction, according to Keaton. Good yields of all forages are more attainable when proper levels of lime and fertilizer are applied to pastures and hay meadows.

In addition to increasing soil pH, lime supplies calcium or calcium and magnesium (dolomitic limestone), both essential nutrients for plant growth.


How NPN Can Work For You

How NPN Can Work For You


Non-Protein Nitrogen (NPN) –usually in the form of urea–has been used as a source of crude protein in ruminant diets for more than a century. But because the concerns related to mismanaged feed urea have been widely discussed, many producers and members of the feed industry hesitate to use urea in their protein supplements, particularly for cattle on high forage diets. But there ARE good reasons to utilize urea in beef cattle supplements.


TSCRA Offers Reward For Information In Cattle Killings

TSCRA Offers Reward For Information In Cattle Killings


FORT WORTH, Texas, Jan. 3, 2008—A reward is being offered for information regarding the almost 30 head of cattle that have been reported as shot and killed in a concentrated area in Northeastern Oklahoma since August. As recently as a few days ago, three bred cows and one llama were killed at a ranch near Claremore, Okla., about 30 miles northeast of Tulsa.

Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association Special Ranger John Cummings, who has been working with area game rangers and sheriff’s departments on the case, says the number of incidences is still on the rise. He received four reports just yesterday.


NC Cattlemen’s Association Donates to Help Hay Effort

NC Cattlemen’s Association Donates to Help Hay Effort

3WC News Blog

The N.C. Cattlemen’s Association has donated $5,000 to help North Carolina farmers cope with a massive hay shortage brought on by extreme drought, Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler announced today. The funding will assist the Ag Partners Hay Relief Program, which the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services set up to help cattle farmers defray a portion of the cost of transporting hay from outside the state to their farms.


Cow conundrum, Farmers find wheat grazing costly this year

Cow conundrum, Farmers find wheat grazing costly this year

By Lara K. Richards


Wheat fields across North Texas are getting greener by the day, but they aren’t filling up with cattle.

The dry fall, coupled with the high price of wheat, is keeping wheat grazing down right now, said Stan Bevers, professor and extension economist with the Texas A&M Research and Extension Center in Lockett.

Wheat production got off to a slow start this year when rains halted in early fall, the time farmers like to get their crops in the ground.


Why Kosher Meat Is A Healthier Alternative

Why Kosher Meat Is A Healthier Alternative

Cathy Sherman


Many health-conscious people have decided to refrain from eating meat. Additionally, many humane-conscious people have eliminated meat from their diet. Both groups have good reasons for their decisions. Interestingly, on some of the points, their reasons intersect with each other. The intersection results from the issue of how the animal’s emotions before and during slaughter affect the nutritional quality and safety of the meat.


S. Dakota beef plant construction continues

S. Dakota beef plant construction continues

Tom Wray


ABERDEEN, S.D. – Northern Beef Packers said Wednesday that a new plant in Aberdeen, S.D., will hire 200 workers and kill about 300 cattle per day when it begins operations.

 The Associated Press reported that the $40 million plant is expected to open in August. It will eventually have 600 employees and process about 1,500 cattle a day.


Readers share their beefs with story

Readers share their beefs with story


I encouraged readers a couple weeks ago to give grass-fed beef a try because of its health benefits, eco-friendly nature and connections to local farmers. I wrote a long story for the Food section about local grass-fed beef producers, which you can read here, followed by an opinionated blog post you can check out here.

Two readers e-mailed me with concerns about the shortcomings of grass-fed beef. Feel free to join the debate on this highly complex issue. Someday soon we’ll have a way for readers to respond directly to blog posts and stories without having to e-mail us directly, but until then, here’s what the two readers said. Write me here if you’d like me to post your comments on grass-fed beef.


What Are Mycotoxins?

What Are Mycotoxins?


Certain species of fungi (molds) produce toxic substances called mycotoxins. These fungi may be found growing on feed, silage, or hay in the field or in storage. Most mycotoxin production occurs in the field before harvest, but poor storage practices can increase already existing mycotoxin levels. Mycotoxins can cause cattle health and productivity problems at very low dosages, parts per million (ppm) or parts per billion (ppb). Mycotoxins are not necessarily produced whenever feed or forage becomes moldy, but evidence of mold indicates a risk of toxins. Fungi growth may also be present but undetectable upon casual observation.


Uses of Electronic Identification to Improve Management of Meat Animals

Uses of Electronic Identification to Improve Management of Meat Animals   

Wisconsin Agriculturalist

Recent technology in electronic livestock identification systems will be discussed and demonstrated on Saturday, March 8 at the Public Events Building, Arlington Agricultural Research Station, N695 Hopkins Rd., Arlington, WI 53911. Registration begins at 10 a.m., and the program will conclude at 4 p.m.

Electronic identification of individual animals with radio frequency identification (RFID) devices such as RFID ear tags allows tracking of food animals through the production chain from birth to consumption. This is important to both consumers and livestock producers in case of a serious disease outbreak. However, RFID technology also can be used on the farm to improve animal well-being and efficiency of animal management.


Geier Elected To Lead Missouri Cattlemen’s Association

Geier Elected To Lead Missouri Cattlemen’s Association


After serving on the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association’s (MCA) membership, Beef House, convention and executive committees, David ‘Blue’ Geier, of California, Missouri, feels prepared to step into his new role as President of the state wide association.

“I am excited about serving the members of the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association and I look forward to working with the newly elected officers as we move the association forward,” said Geier.

Geier, who grew up on a diversified farm in rural Moniteau County, was elected to the president’s position during the MCA annual meeting and convention, held December 6-8 in Springfield, Missouri.


Beef Feedlot Meeting to be January 15

Beef Feedlot Meeting to be January 15


What will cattle and corn prices be in 2008?  How does the type of feedlot facility affect cattle performance?  What kind of nutrient value is in beef manure?  What is the Small Iowa Feedlot Plan?  How can you qualify cattle for export to Japan?  These questions are the focus of a Beef Feedlot Meeting on January 15 in Sioux Center.  The meeting will be from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Corporate Center.

 “We are pleased to have presenters from four states – Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota and Colorado on this year’s program,” stated Beth Doran, ISU Extension Beef Field Specialist.  “Ten prominent animal health companies, featuring the newest technologies in animal production and management, will be in our trade show and are co-sponsors for this meeting.”


USCA Predicts Challenges & Opportunities During Second Congressional Session

USCA Predicts Challenges & Opportunities During Second Congressional Session


USCA (January 2, 2008) – The U.S. Cattlemen’s Association (USCA) President Jon Wooster, San Lucas, Calif., said today that USCA intends to hit the ground running when the second session of the 110th Congress reconvenes on January 3, 2008.

“USCA will aggressively seek policy changes in Washington, DC that will make a difference to producers’ bottom line,” Wooster stated. “The stage is set for many positive things to occur but we must be vigilantly engaged in the process. USCA’s Director of Government Affairs, Jess Peterson, is working virtually night and day on Capitol Hill to ensure that producers have a strong voice. We have a game plan to move forward on key issues, we have a board and membership that’s fully engaged in all aspects of policy-making and we look forward to the many opportunities the second congressional session presents us with.”