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Today's First Look:
mornings with cash and futures reviewed- includes where the Cash Cattle market stands, the latest Feeder Cattle Markets Etc.
Okla Cash Grain:
Feeder Cattle Recap:
Slaughter Cattle Recap:
TCFA Feedlot Recap:
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Ron Hays, Senior Farm Director and Editor
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|Oklahoma's Latest Farm and Ranch News
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON
Monday, March 30, 2020
District Court Affirms State Beef Councils Are a Legal Part of the Beef Checkoff- Dismisses Litigation Brought by R-Calf USA
The Beef Checkoff program and fifteen grassroots-led state beef councils won a major court victory on Friday when the United States District Court of Montana ruled in favor of USDA and the Montana Beef Council in the matter of R-CALF vs. Sonny Perdue and USDA. Brian Morris, Chief District Judge for the US District Court in Great Falls, Montana signed the order declaring final summary judgement for USDA and the Montana Beef Council on Friday, March 27, 2020.
Among the Beef Councils that had been targeted by R-Calf in this litigation was the Kansas and Texas Beef Councils. The Oklahoma Beef Council was not one of the fourteen additional Beef Councils that were added after the initial court ruling had placed Montana's Beef Council in a state of limbo in their operations.
The National Cattlemen's Beef Association praised the court's decision, which ends a legal battle that has spanned more than three years and interrupted beef promotion functions in Montana. The case had threatened local input and promotion efforts at the state level across the country.
Click or tap here to read more about the final summary judgement- we have pulled some key elements of the ruling that we believe were key to the court case going the way of the defendants- and we have a link to the complete ruling in our story that is at the top of website on this Monday morning.
|In Our Latest Road to Rural Prosperity- A Recap of the Oklahoma Youth Expo- Closed Early by Coronavirus
Over the weekend- we uploaded our latest Road to Rural Prosperity. I traveled over to the headquarters of the Oklahoma Youth Expo and had a behind the scenes conversation with the President of the OYE, Tyler Norvell and Exec VP Kass Newell.
We discussed the unfolding of events at the 2020 OYE that saw thousands of head of livestock show as the coronavirus pandemic expanded into Oklahoma- and when the virus was found and confirmed as being a Community Spread Case in Oklahoma County on March 15th- the Expo's leadership- including Tyler and Kass- made the necessary choice to keep all involved safe and ended the Expo half way through the show schedule.
In our visit- we take you through the process of opening the show, trying to hurry up the show and finally closing the show.
Click here to jump over and take a listen.
Episode 27 of the Road to Rural Prosperity is sponsored by BancFirst, Loyal to Oklahoma and to You.
Speaking of the Road to Rural Prosperity- there are several recent episodes that I thought you might want to check off- if you just have not had time to do so yet-
That include this past week's Episode that our friend AJ Griffin did with Janet Pulliam of the American Cancer Society- some really good information about rural healthcare was provided in their conversation- click here for that podcast.
ALSO- our visit with Michael Kelsey was really a great chat with the Executive Vice President of the state's Cattle organization- the OCA- Take a listen to Michael and I on the status of the cattle business here in Oklahoma by clicking or tapping here.
FINALLY- back to the OYE and early in the Expo- a brand new event was unveiled- the Ag Mechanics Contest- and we talked with Jerry Renshaw who was Superintendant of the new segment of the OYE- and we also talked to some of the very first participants in the Contest- click or tap here to hear that great visit with these pioneers even as the judges were making their way around the show floor.
Midwest Farm Shows is proud to produce the two best Farm Shows in the State of Oklahoma annually- the Tulsa Farm Show each December and the Oklahoma City Farm Show each April.
They would like to thank all of you who participated in their 2019 Tulsa City Farm Show.
Up next will be the Oklahoma City's premier spring agricultural and ranching event with returns to the State Fair Park June 18-19-20, 2020.
Now is the ideal time to contact the Midwest Farm Show Office at 507-437-7969 and book space at the 2020 Oklahoma City Farm Show. To learn more about the Oklahoma City Farm Show, click here.
The U.S. State Department revised its restrictions on the processing of visa applications submitted by farm workers in Mexico after hearing concerns that the restrictions would lead to a farm worker shortage in the U.S. Consular officers can now waive the visa interview requirement for eligible first-time and returning H-2A and H-2B applicants, making more workers in the H-2 program available while prioritizing public health.
The following statement may be attributed to American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall:
"We applaud the administration for recognizing the contributions H-2A and H-2B workers make on farms across this country to ensure Americans have access to healthy, affordable food. Acknowledging the critical role of immigrant farm laborers by expanding the number eligible for visas protects the public health while ensuring families continue to have access to a stable food source.
"America's farmers and ranchers are committed to feeding America's families during the coronavirus pandemic and beyond. Workers in the H-2A program represent 20% of the country's farm workforce, so their contributions are necessary as we enter a critical time in the planting season."
With deadlines quickly approaching, the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) administered by the USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is partnering with Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever (PFQF) here in Oklahoma. PFQF is assisting Oklahoma's farmers and ranchers to apply for a federal program that provides free technical and possible financial assistance to landowners wanting to manage portions of their property for monarch butterfly habitat.
"The Monarch is the iconic butterfly of North America and, like many other pollinators, their populations are declining. This must be a concern for all of us, as the food system we rely on requires pollinators," said Gary O'Neill, Oklahoma State Conservationist for NRCS. Quail Forever biologists, in partnership with NRCS, work side-by-side with Oklahoma producers to develop a conservation plan tailored to the producer's property. "These plans provide technical and possible access to financial assistance on how to use conservation practices to meet natural resource concerns and production goals," said O' Neill.
As an example, producers interested in incorporating prescribed fire and redcedar removal into their operations may be most interested in the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) that has an application deadline of April 17, 2020.
Producers can also plant native wildflower seeds along field borders or in under-productive areas of crop fields, in buffers along waterways, around wetlands, near barns or gardens, and other suitable locations. Farmers interested in planting nectar-rich plants, including milkweed, to fuel the monarch's multi-generational migration may be eligible for assistance through the Monarch RCPP Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) that has a May 29, 2020 application deadline.
Today I catch up Ethan Lane, vice president of Government Affairs for the National Cattlemen's Beef Assoc. regarding the stimulus package Congress has been working on all week.
This is a surreal environment for everyone, Lane said, as he explained the emotion and logic of supporting the cattle industry.
"People need our protein," Lane said, as consumers are buying as much meat as possible.
There has been a huge demand for boxed beef and consequent market support. However, the individual beef producer has not experienced the same support.
For months now, going back to the Tyson plant fire in Kansas last year, we have been concerned about the lack of price discovery, Lane said.
The NCBA official said the cattle industry typically doesn't ask for direct financial support and therefore it is struggling to navigate the process.
We haven't done this before, Lane said, but these are extraordinary times.
As industry and government officials work through the technical implementation process, Lane encourages producers to keep track of all their paperwork which will help document the price spread.
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Kim Kirchherr is an internationally recognized and innovative farm to table expert with the unique ability to connect farmers, retailers, consumers and other relevant organizations and individuals.
The following is her latest blog that deals with the Coronavirus Pandemic and advice on how to avoid panicking during these challenging times.
DON'T "PANIC PURCHASE", PLAN YOUR PURCHASE
We are living in strange times. My guess is nearly every generation could say that and they'd be right, for different reasons.
Novel Coronavirus is on our minds as it continues to impact our personal and professional lives. We are starting to see headlines about lifestyle choices, food in particular, to help "save" us.
We really can't eat our way out of emergencies in most cases, despite some (inaccurate) headlines suggesting there is a magical solution in times of concern.
We CAN make really simple, incredibly helpful choices that support us every day. Like eating balanced meals, getting enough sleep and proper activity, as well as washing our hands.
I am not a doctor. I am not a virus expert. I am a health professional, nutrition in particular.
The good news is, this is a great reminder that we can and should stock our kitchens so we can make balanced, intentional meals on a moment's notice.
We can include canned, fresh, dried, and frozen foods to ensure that even if the power goes out, we are covered. If there are things that happen, from weather disasters to outbreaks, we can prepare our cars, homes, and offices to make our existence as safe and as healthy as possible.
Disruptions and distractions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic must not be allowed to keep Oklahomans from participating in the Census, officials said.
"There's too much at stake for the entire decade ahead of us," said Larry Sanders, Oklahoma State University Extension agricultural economist. "The situation seems to be changing daily, as we see libraries close and Extension offices move their services online, places where people typically find help."
The formal launch of the centennial head count is still scheduled for April 1, although bureau workers have already been working on counting difficult-to-track populations such as the homeless and transients. Some rural residents may also be at risk of being overlooked because of nonstandard home addresses. Typically, Census workers are sent into the field for follow-up surveys when residents don't respond. The COVID-19 illness is making the process more difficult than usual.
The census is vital to American democracy. Results are used to allocate legislators in the U.S. House of Representatives, which also determines the makeup of the Electoral College for presidential elections.
Census data also determine federal spending budgets. In fiscal year 2017, for example, more than 300 federal programs depended on the survey to distribute $1.5 trillion to state and local governments, as well as nonprofit organizations and businesses.
When U.S. residents can't be accounted for, their communities' share of money is distributed elsewhere.
McGoldrick said that cost to Oklahomans is about $1,500 annually per missed survey multiplied over 10 years. He also stressed the need for rural residents to step up their efforts.
To read more on the Census, click here:
Members of the Oklahoma Home and Community Education group in Ada, Oklahoma, are putting their sewing skills to good use in an effort to help the healthcare practitioners at their local hospital.
Janna Kelley, Oklahoma State University Extension family and consumer sciences/4-H youth development educator in Pontotoc County, said when her OHCE group was contacted recently to make masks for Mercy Hospital in Ada, they quickly jumped into action.
"I'm not surprised at how quickly members of the group got started making these masks," Kelley said. "Community involvement always has been a big part of OHCE programming, and if there was ever been a time when our community needed help, it's now."
Hospitals across the country are running low on supplies in response to the spread of COVID-19 infection, including disposable masks.
Manufacture and delivery of replacement equipment is uncertain. This is where OHCE comes in. Jodi Langwell, president of the Pickett-Center OHCE group, said her club, along with the Vanoss OHCE group, started producing masks using a pattern supplied by the hospital.
Kelley said anyone in the community with sewing skills who wants to help can contact her for the pattern and instruction.
"Anyone is welcome to make masks and drop them off at the Pontotoc County OSU Extension Office. Our office is closed to the public during this time, but the masks can be left by the door and I'll make sure they get delivered to the hospital," Kelley said. "I'm really proud of all of my OHCE members who saw this need and jumped right in to help. It's just what we do."
The Pontotoc County OSU Extension Office is located at 1700 N. Broadway in Ada. Contact Kelley at 580-332-2153 or email@example.com for more information.
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