Daily Archives: August 26, 2009

‘Food for the Soul’ From a Farmer’s View

‘Food for the Soul’ From a Farmer’s View

Farm Bureau Blog

The New York Times ran an Op-Ed piece titled “Food for the Soul” (Aug. 22) which misrepresents agriculture today. Being a 5th generation family farmer, I have first-hand, present-day knowledge of how a farm works. I farm because I love what I do, I love caring for my livestock, my land and providing safe food for my family, and your family.

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Food for the Soul

Food for the Soul

NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF

New York Times

Editor’s note: Stories of this ilk are included in the blog to inform those in our industry how agriculture is being presented to and perceived by the public.

On a summer visit back to the farm here where I grew up, I think I figured out the central problem with modern industrial agriculture. It’s not just that it produces unhealthy food, mishandles waste and overuses antibiotics in ways that harm us all.

More fundamentally, it has no soul.

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Are birth weights affected by calving season?

Are birth weights affected by calving season?

Dr. Glenn Selk, Extension Cattle Specialist, Oklahoma State University

Occasionally coffee shop wisdom can lead a cow/calf producer to a wrong conclusion.  Such is the case with the situation of birth weights that can be expected of fall calving cows.  The spring calving cows that have lost condition throughout the winter are nearly always thinner in February and March, than their counterparts that calve in September and October.

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Harvesting quality corn silage starts with timing

Harvesting quality corn silage starts with timing

The Land

Length of cut and crop processing also important

Despite the cool weather that we had in July, corn and soybean fields are heading toward maturation.

The rains that we have had in August along with some much needed heat has helped us get caught up a little bit. One of the next jobs on the farm will be chopping corn silage. Most of our beef and dairy producers put up some corn silage that will be an important part of the beef and dairy ration for the year.

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Nine Vaccine Myths

Nine Vaccine Myths

Beef Today

With so many cattle vaccines available—nearly 125 different vaccines are currently on the market—there is a considerable amount of information, and misinformation, out there. To help clear up some misconceptions, Vic Cortese, DVM, PhD, DABVP, Pfizer Animal Health, busts nine common vaccine myths.

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Hay Testing and Understanding Forage Quality

Hay Testing and Understanding Forage Quality

Mississippi State University

Do you wonder if your hay is of the highest quality? Forage testing assesses the nutrient composition of forages, allowing ranchers to develop feeding programs and commercial hay producers to develop marketing strategies. Because hay and other stored forages play a major role in winter-feeding programs, testing hay now will provide producers with enough time to design a good feeding program that optimizes hay usefulness and livestock performance.

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If We Could Just Manage Like The Politicians Do

If We Could Just Manage Like The Politicians Do

Troy Marshall

BEEF Magazine

Across the board, government revenues are down dramatically. The federal government is in a very similar situation to the dairy industry, which has suffered a dramatic drop in revenues. In fact, tax receipts are on pace to drop 18% this year, the biggest single-year decline since the Great Depression.

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Disasters Happen

Disasters Happen

Becky Mills

Angus Journal

When Michael Bishop came to 7L Farms in April 2005, there was no disaster preparedness plan. Instead, he relied on owner Jimmy Levens for a quick how-to on getting the operation as ready as possible before Hurricane Katrina hit in late August. Unfortunately, he got an all-too-vivid illustration of why a detailed plan is needed.

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US Experts Team up to Promote Cattle Well-Being

US Experts Team up to Promote Cattle Well-Being

Thebeefsite.com

The North American Food Animal Well-being Commission for Beef (NAFAWC-Beef)—which includes world-renowned experts in animal well-being—will advocate for increased research funding for animal well-being, facilitate the communication of research results in a more timely manner, advance best management practices in cattle health and welfare, and serve as an unbiased, science- and production- based group to address concerns about animal well-being, says National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA).

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Cow Congress set for Sept. 25

Cow Congress set for Sept. 25

The Huntsville Item

The 2009 Cow Country Congress program, an annual event supported by the Extension Beef and Forage committees from seven counties, will meet at the Corlay Farm and Cattle Co. at Dodge on Sept. 25.

Reggie Lepley, Walker County Extension Agent–Ag, said program registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. followed by introductions at 9.

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Cattle ranchers are losing part of their herds due to drought

Cattle ranchers are losing part of their herds due to drought

San Antonio Business Journal

The hot, dry weather conditions gripping much of South Texas is leading to drought-related cattle deaths for area ranchers, according to Texas AgriLife Extension Service officials.

Sammy Gavito is the AgriLife Extension agent for Duval County, which is west of Corpus Christi. He knows firsthand of the problems facing ranchers. In Duval and neighboring counties, agriculture is largely based on beef production.

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Animal Well-being Commission Formed

Animal Well-being Commission Formed

Hoosier Ag Today

  Leaders from academia and the beef industry are announcing the formation of an independent advisory group to focus on beef cattle health and well-being. The North American Food Animal Well-being Commission for Beef, which includes world-renowned experts in animal well-being, will advocate for increased research funding for animal well-being, facilitate the communication of research results in a more timely manner, advance best management practices in cattle health and welfare, and serve as an unbiased, science- and production- based group to address concerns about animal well-being.

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Steve Cornett:   A Lackey’s Tacky Take

Steve Cornett:   A Lackey’s Tacky Take

Beef Today

I’ve been reading Alan Guebert’s fluidly written columns for a long time, but have never been introduced to him. So I don’t know how to pronounce his last name, but presume the “t” to be silent, as in “Colbert Report,” but can’t swear to it.

Now I see he has decided I’m a packer "lackey” for doubting that the concentration of beef packers is responsible for the woes that have befallen cattle producers these last decades.

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Handling Liquid Feed Commodities

Handling Liquid Feed Commodities

Greg Lardy, Beef Cattle Specialist, NDSU Department of Animal and Range Sciences

Ethanol production is increasing in several Midwestern states. Consequently, availability of liquid byproducts, such as corn condensed distiller’s solubles, is also increasing. Liquid feeds are useful for conditioning rations, improving palatability, reducing dustiness and providing nutrients to livestock. Many liquid by-product materials are available for use in beef cattle rations. In addition, a number of commercial products which can be formulated to rigid specifications are available.

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Vilsack Takes White Ribbon

Vilsack Takes White Ribbon

John Harrington

DTN/Progressive Farmer

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said Wednesday he’s committed to increasing federal purchases of surplus agricultural commodities, a move he argued offers immediate help to struggling rural areas.

Speaking to farmers at the Iowa State Fair, the former Iowa governor said commodity purchases are among the most effective ways to help rural economies.

"This is probably the most direct stimulus you can get in terms of its ability to get into the economy quickly," Vilsack said.

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