~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Wednesday April 7, 2010A service of Johnston Enterprises, P & K Equipment/ P & K Wind Energy and American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company!
-- USMEF's Phil Seng Calls Vilsack Plan to Deal With Japanese on Widening US Beef Access "Realistic"
-- However- the Japanese Ag Minister Doesn't Want to Dance
-- US & Brazil Move Closer to Deal to Avoid Sanctions Over US Cotton Supports
-- NCBA Challenges EPA's Plan to Circumvent Normal Rule Making and Start Compliance on Greenhouse Gas Regs this coming January first.
-- Akaushi Cattle Can Change the US Beef Cattle Genetics For the Better
-- Grass to Grid Sale Coming This Saturday in Follett, Texas
-- Have You Checked Your Mail Box???
-- Let's Check the Markets!
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. We are pleased to have American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company as a regular sponsor of our daily update- click here to go to their AFR web site to learn more about their efforts to serve rural America!
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USMEF's Phil Seng Calls Vilsack Plan to Deal With Japanese on Widening US Beef Access "Realistic"
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~During the George W. Bush years, we heard more than once from USMEF President Phil Seng that the Republican Administration was not going to get very far with the Oriental mindset by demanding a complete and full reopening- all at once. Seng told several times that the culture there prefers an incremental process- and as a result, the Japanese market remains open only to US beef from animals 21 months of age and younger.
With Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack in Japan this week- Seng says that Vilsack's comments about wanting to widen access for US beef on a step by step basis is a realistic way to get more US beef into Japan. He adds that Tom Vilsack's visit this week to Japan is the first by a sitting USDA Secretary since 2003 and an important gesture on behalf of U.S. farmers and ranchers.
Vilsack is scheduled to talk with his Japanese counterparts about beef trade before the week is out. Covering his movements in Japan is colleague Stewart Doan, who files an audio report with comments from Phil Seng. Click on the link below to hear those comments about the latest episode of "The Cow that Stole Christmas" that began playing with that Canadian cow found on the wrong side of border way back in December 2003.
Click here for more on how Phil Seng hopes thiings will play out- perhaps this year- on US beef access into Japan.
However- the Japanese Ag Minister Doesn't Want to Dance
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Despite the hopeful talk on this side of the Pacific, Japanese newswires are reporting this morning that Japanese officials say they won't bend current restrictions on imports of U.S. beef.
Japan Agriculture Minister Hirotaka Akamatsu was quoted as saying he "has no plan to ask the government's food safety commission to review U.S. beef." "Asking for a review by the food safety panel would mean Japan was heading in the direction of changing its trade restriction," Akamatsu told reporters. "Honestly speaking, I don't expect to do so."
Japan's US beef imports now stand at only around 10 percent of their former peak, while Australia has become the biggest beef importer. US farm state senators have again accused Tokyo of being too rigid on its beef ban which continues even though no new cases of the brain-wasting cattle disease bovine spongiform encephalopathy have been detected in years.
Click here for one of the stories we found on the web this morning about these comments from the Japanese Ag Minister
US & Brazil Move Closer to Deal to Avoid Sanctions Over US Cotton Supports
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~United States Trade Representative Ron Kirk and Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced Tuesday that the United States and Brazil have agreed on a path toward a negotiated settlement with Brazil over contested U.S. cotton program supports. The U.S. hope is that continuing negotiations will lead to an agreement which avoids having Brazil impose retaliatory measures under World Trade Organization rules.
Ambassador Kirk issued this statement about the delay achieved in getting Brazil to back off imposing sanctions this week saying "I am pleased that our teams have been able to make substantial progress towards the goal of a negotiated settlement which would avoid the imposition of countermeasures against U.S. trade, including U.S. exports and intellectual property rights. We now have a clear path forward, one that is in the best interest of both the United States and Brazil. As a result of our discussions with Brazil we have avoided imposition of higher tariffs against hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. goods exports which were scheduled to go into effect this week.
The National Cotton Council also signaled their pleasure with the announcement from the USTR and USDA- and in their statement, they indicate that it's their understanding that no further changes will be made to the US farm program dealing with cotton until the 2012-2013 farm bill debate. "The two critical aspects of the agreement are that it avoids the immediately harmful economic effects of trade retaliation and it puts the serious discussion concerning changes in the U.S. cotton program before Congress in the 2012 farm bill, which is where that discussion belongs."
Click here to read more on this announcement made yesterday morning by the Obama Administration.
NCBA Challenges EPA's Plan to Circumvent Normal Rule Making and Start Compliance on Greenhouse Gas Regs this coming January first.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The National Cattlemen's Beef Association and the Coalition for Responsible Regulation filed a Petition for Review in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals challenging the Environmental Protection Agency's recent rule which reconsidered the so- called "Johnson Memo" interpreting when greenhouse gases (GHGs) become subject to the federal Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) permit program.
The final rule, announced March 29, is the second step in EPA's phased-in approach to GHG regulation. Under EPA's decision, facilities would be required to get PSD permits for GHG emissions starting in January 2011 when the first national rule controlling GHGs (from cars) takes effect, and would be required to do so without EPA undertaking the deliberate rulemaking process required by the Clean Air Act (CAA).
"While EPA touts its decision to hold off on regulation until next year as a 'common sense' plan to give industry time to comply, this is nothing more than a smokescreen in an attempt to distract the public from the fact that EPA is circumventing the normal, required rulemaking process for such regulation. Under the CAA, the EPA must adopt a National Ambient Air Quality Standard for a pollutant prior to regulating it under the PSD program. No such rulemaking has been undertaken. As we have said many times, the consequence of GHG regulation will be economic devastation for American businesses," said Tamara Thies, NCBA chief environmental counsel. "Before imposing very-real, long-term negative impacts on the entire U.S. economy, the EPA should at least follow Congress' strict instructions for regulating pollutants under the PSD program."
Read more about this latest powergrab by the EPA to regulate everything in the name of protecting the US from Greenhouse Gases
Akaushi Cattle Can Change the US Beef Cattle Genetics For the Better
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~It's not a fad, or a flash in the pan. Rather, Bill Fielding of Heartbrand Beef is convinced that Akaushi cattle genetics are the real thing- and can be a game changer for the US beef cattle industry.
We continue our series of Beef Buzz shows with Fielding on these Japanese Red cattle- and Fielding has some big goals over the next decade for this breed. He thinks that we could see 10 to 20% of the US cattle herd with Akaushi genetics in their bloodlines in that time frame- and he claims that would mean a better producing animal and a move toward a healthier beef product to offer consumers.
Click on the link below for part three of our four part series that we
have going in this week;s Beef Buzz on the potential of the Akaushi breed-
and the claims being made by the Texans who own the genetics here in North
Click here for Part Three of our Beef Buzz look at the Akaushi Cattle Breed here in the US
Grass to Grid Sale Coming This Saturday in Follett, Texas
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Griswold Cattle - GCC Genetics Grass to Grid 2010 Sale is scheduled for this Saturday, April 10th at Follett, Texas (just west of Woodward, OK). The sale will begin at 12:30pm.
This sale includes cattle and genetics from the GCC Griswold Cattle Company LLC and Collins Cattle Company.
The Grass to Grid Sale will feature 200 Bulls, many sons of leading
maternal sires. The genetics will include Angus, MaineAngus and
For more information, you can call -1800-975-6313 or click on the link below for a sale catalog. The sale will be held on the west side of Follett, TX at the intersection of Hwy 15 and FR 2741, at the Jeff Bourquin sale facility. This is just a few miles west of the Oklahoma State Line and US Highway 283.
Click here for a sale catalog for the Grass to Grid Cattle Sale set for this Saturday in Follett, Texas.
Have You Checked Your Mail Box???
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~There's a couple of pieces of mail I hope you have received this past week and or will receive this week. In recent days, the Radio Oklahoma Network has published our very first "RON Value Book" that has been sent out to over 20,000 addresses across Oklahoma- targeted at farmers, ranchers and rural landowners here in the state. We have the centerfold where we spotlight two of the major events of this month in Oklahoma ag circles- the Southern Plains Farm Show and the 2010 Oklahoma FFA Convention. We also have a calendar of events and a listing of the radio stations that currently are a part of our Radio Oklahoma Ag Network family.
We have a link below to a PDF copy of the RON Value Book. I hope you
have received your copy in the mail- if you have, I would love to get your
feedback about it. Send me an email and give me your thoughts- including
how we might make this of greater value to you in the future. We plan on
sending these out to folks across the state four times a year.
Besides the RON Value Book- News9 in Oklahoma City and News on 6 in Tulsa have mailed a promotional piece on behalf of the Oklahoma Tourism industry. Inside those mailouts, you will find a mugshot of yours truly with an article on Oklahoma Agritourism and how it has rapidly grown in recent years. I am proud that we have had a small part in beating the drum for the over 500 venues that are now a part of the Oklahoma Agritourism scene- and invite you to check your stack of mail for that as well.
Click here for the PDF version of Issue One of the RON Value Book
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We also invite you to check out our website at the link below to check out an archive of these daily emails, audio reports and top farm news story links from around the globe.
Let's Check the Markets!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We've had requests to include Canola prices for your convenience here- and we will be doing so on a regular basis. Current cash price for Canola is $7.40 per bushel, while the 2010 New Crop contracts for Canola are now available are $7.65 per bushel- delivered to local participating elevators that are working with PCOM.
Here are some links we will leave in place on an ongoing basis- Click
on the name of the report to go to that link:
God Bless! You can reach us at the following: