Monthly Archives: December 2017

BeefTalk: Rolling Out Hay is Rolling Out Dollars

BeefTalk: Rolling Out Hay is Rolling Out Dollars

Kris Ringwall, Beef Specialist, NDSU Extension Service

As the year ends, reflecting on the past year is good. The obvious point this year is the lack of forage and how, as producers, one responded to the challenge. The Dickinson Research Extension Center needs more than 1,000 1,300-pound bales to make the stretch to spring grass. That number is buffered a bit because the calves are receiving 3 pounds of commercial supplement daily and the cows 4 pounds of commercial supplement every other day. But forage is the essence of a cattle operation, and keeping costs low is critical.

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EPA nixes bid to herd livestock under Clean Air Act

EPA nixes bid to herd livestock under Clean Air Act

Don Jenkins

Capital Press

The Environmental Protection Agency announced Tuesday it has denied a petition by environmental groups to regulate concentrated animal feeding operations like factories under the Clean Air Act. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, in a letter to petitioners, acknowledged livestock are potential sources of air pollutants. The agency, however, doesn’t have a reliable method for estimating animal emissions. Until it does, new rules could be unjustified and ineffective, according to Pruitt.

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US Beef Stampedes Chinese Market

US Beef Stampedes Chinese Market

In November, three Iowa companies began selling beef to China, following Nebraska, which is supplying more than half of the US’s beef exports to China, according the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). Nebraska’s share of US beef exports has risen over the past decade from less than 4 per cent in 2005 to more than 18 per cent in 2016, according to the USDA. About a dozen Nebraska-based companies sell beef to China, in addition to 24 companies in 10 other states.

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Beef Consumption And Beef Demand

Beef Consumption And Beef Demand

Derrell S. Peel

U.S. domestic beef consumption is projected to be 56.6 pounds per capita for 2017, up from 55.4 pounds in 2016 (retail weight). That is a 2.2 percent year-over-year increase. Beef consumption is higher because beef production is increasing; in fact, it is projected to be up 3.8 percent year over year from 2016.

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Is genetic testing beneficial for your cow herd? 

Is genetic testing beneficial for your cow herd?

Katelyn Brockus

High Plains Journal

The two words, genetic testing, can be quite intimidating to some producers and can sound like a critically used decision-making tool for others. So many questions come along with genetic testing that sometimes a producer just doesn’t know where to start. After spending some time in Cheyenne, Wyoming at the Range Beef Cow Symposium, it was clear that cattle producers have begun using this technology in their herds.

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Iowa Farmers Work to Keep Cattle Warm in Sub-Zero Temps

Iowa Farmers Work to Keep Cattle Warm in Sub-Zero Temps

Janelle Tucker


Iowa cattle producers are putting in extra work to make sure their animals are well taken care of in this extreme cold. David Trowbridge, president of the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association, says the breeds of cattle raised in Iowa are “built” for cold weather environments. But, they still need plenty of attention to survive sub-zero conditions.

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Bidding on the future every time you buy a bull

Bidding on the future every time you buy a bull

Wes Ishmael

Beef Magazine

Bull price discovery is simple. They’re worth exactly what two or more bidders decide at auction, or what the market will bear at private treaty. How buyers arrive at their willingness to pay a certain price for one bull versus another — how they value bulls — is where it gets complicated.

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Less water needed to produce beef today

Less water needed to produce beef today

Lorraine Stevenson

Manitoba Cooperator

A new study adds to a growing body of evidence that beef’s environmental footprint is lessening as time passes. Results released Dec. 14 by researchers at University of Manitoba and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) show it now takes less water to raise a kilo­gram of beef.

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Soaring Popularity Of Grass-Fed Beef May Run Into Roadblock: Less Nutritious Grass

Soaring Popularity Of Grass-Fed Beef May Run Into Roadblock: Less Nutritious Grass

Alex Smith


A few years ago, Kansas City restaurateur Anton Kotar surveyed the local and national restaurant scenes and concluded his town’s reputation as a steakhouse paradise had slipped. The problem, he says, is the way conventional beef is raised – bulked up with grain on feedlots, making it cheap and plentiful and changing what Americans expect to taste.

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Arizona rancher on Mexico border uses science to breed sustainable cattle

Arizona rancher on Mexico border uses science to breed sustainable cattle

Shayla Hyde

Cronkite News

The road turns from a dusty brown to a deep, red clay along the road to Buena Vista Ranch, where cattle rancher Dean Fish raises commercial cattle. Green vegetation dots the desert for miles from Fish’s ranch headquarters to the ranch’s edge on the Arizona-Mexico border. Black Angus cattle dip their heads to grab another bite of mesquite.

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Brands a lot more than fire or freeze on a hide

Brands a lot more than fire or freeze on a hide

Jaclyn Wilson

Midwest Messenger

I’d love to say that I’ve spent December diligently working on ranch projects. While that is true on some accounts, it seems that the majority of my time has been focused on work surrounding the Nebraska Brand Committee (NBC). I was appointed to NBC a little over two years ago and it’s been a whirlwind ride ever since. What was described as an “appointed committee that meets quarterly” has turned into some weeks a fulltime job.

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Red Angus Teams up With Kansas State University to Publish Valuable Data From Cow-Calf Veterinarians

Red Angus Teams up With Kansas State University to Publish Valuable Data From Cow-Calf Veterinarians


Results from a detailed survey of cow-calf veterinarians compiling their recommendations on vaccine protocols, health management, and production practice recommendations were recently published in The Professional Animal Scientist, the publication for the American Registry of Professional Animal Scientists. The study, “A Survey of Recommended Practices Made by Veterinary Practitioners to Cow-Calf Operations in the United States and Canada,” was initiated by the Red Angus Association of America in partnership with the Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station, and provides valuable insight into how these practices can be best applied in individual cowherds.

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Davis Hired as AHA Director of Communications & Public Relations

Davis Hired as AHA Director of Communications & Public Relations

American Hereford

Kendra Davis joins the American Hereford Association team as the director of communications and public relations. As director of communications and public relations, Davis will coordinate marketing and promotion for the AHA. She will also contribute to the AHA website and weekly communication to Hereford producers.

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Fescue Foot Still a Concern in Southwest Missouri

Fescue Foot Still a Concern in Southwest Missouri

David Burton

Bovine Veterinarian

According to Eldon Cole, livestock specialist with University of Missouri Extension, one visit involved a 60-acre pasture that had not been grazed since March. “The farmer wondered what the risk of fescue foot and other related problems brought on by ergot alkaloids would be if pregnant heifers were allowed to graze it,” said Cole.

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Hay Testing for Efficient Winter Feeding

Hay Testing for Efficient Winter Feeding

Christine Gelley

Ohio Beef Cattle Letter

As this year comes to an end, most Ohio graziers are probably feeding a good portion of hay as a part of their animals’ daily ration. Even if there is a supply of stockpiled forage available, we tend to make hay available just in case they need a little extra. It is likely that grain is also part of that daily ration. Well, how do you know how much hay, grain, and pasture they need?

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USDA needs to get out of the regulation business

USDA needs to get out of the regulation business

Alan Newport

Beef Producer

I’ve noticed the social media twits are aflame because USDA withdrew one if its organic rules — in this case a rule which tried to define and regulate animal welfare as part of the organic standards. I say bring on more deregulation.

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CAB opts for USDA grading modernization

CAB opts for USDA grading modernization

Steve Suther

The Fence Post

It’s no big deal, literally, but grading rules that applied needless discounts to a tiny fraction of carcasses are no more for most beef. As of Dec. 18, all graded beef in the U.S. can be evaluated for the most youthful “A” maturity category based on dentition as well as traditional skeletal metrics when assigning quality grades.

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Low-stress handling more effective than conventional stockmanship

Low-stress handling more effective than conventional stockmanship

Carol Ryan Dumas

Capital Press

Fourth-generation Montana rancher Whit Hibbard worked livestock for nearly 40 years before he was introduced to low-stress handling. It took him that long to understand the way he had handled livestock had a cost. And he was slow to put that together because he never got a bill for the losses incurred from bad handling, he told ranchers at his stockmanship school sponsored by University of Idaho Extension.

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FMD drill helps for preparedness

FMD drill helps for preparedness

Jennifer Carrico

High Plains Journal

Having a plan of what to do in the case of a foreign animal outbreak such as foot-and-mouth disease is important for livestock producers. Members of the National Pork Board staff perform FMD preparedness drills around the country to help livestock producers, emergency management personnel, veterinarians, feed mill operators and the general public to understand how the disease would affect daily operations.

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Hereford’s genetic evaluation takes quantum leap forward

Hereford’s genetic evaluation takes quantum leap forward

Dr. Bob Hough

Western Livestock Journal

The American Hereford Association (AHA) recently implemented a completely new, ground-breaking genetic analysis. Hereford now has the most sophisticated and up-to-date genetic analysis in the industry.

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