From: Ron Hays []
Sent: Friday, October 26, 2007 06:17
Subject: Oklahoma's Farm News Update
Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Friday October 26, 2007!
A service of Cusack Meats, Farm Credit of East Central Oklahoma & Midwest Farm Shows
-- Chance Simpson is the American Star in Agri-Placement!!!!!!
-- Senate Ag Committee Passes Their Version of Farm Policy
-- What about $9.00 Corn?????
-- As Litigation Hangs Over the Issue- Poultry Litter Problems being mitigated by those on the ground
-- The Care and Feeding of Brand New Baby Alfalfa.
-- No US Beef to South Korea until we turn the calendar say hello to 2008.
-- Getting Close to a Sell Out- the Bud Williams Marketing Workshop in two weeks in Tulsa

Howdy Neighbors!

Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. We are proud to welcome Farm Credit of East Central Oklahoma as a regular sponsor of our daily email update. Farm Credit of East Central Oklahoma has ten branch offices to serve your farm financing needs and is dedicated to being your first choice for farm credit. Check out their website for more information by clicking here!

The newest sponsor on our daily email service is Cusack Meats, and Al Cusack wants everyone to know that he APPRECIATES Oklahoma's Farmers and Ranchers! You can go to the Cusack website and select some great gift packs of meat for giving- or for yourself! And, our email this morning is also a service of Midwest Farm Shows, producer of the Tulsa Farm Show coming up December 6-8, 2007, as well as the Southern Plains Farm Show in Oklahoma City next spring. Check out details of both of these exciting shows at the official website of Midwest Farm Shows by clicking here.

If you have received this by someone forwarding it to you, you are welcome to subscribe and get this weekday update sent to you directly by clicking here.

Chance Simpson is the American Star in Agri-Placement!!!!!!
It was a great night for Oklahoma as we claimed one of the four American Stars here in Indianapolis- Chance Simpson of Kremlin in north central Oklahoma is the 2007 American Star in Agri- Placement. Chance is a service tech at P&K Equipment in Enid and has just received an Associates Degree at the Juco in Garden City where he received the latest in training for John Deere equipment.

Simpson was presented with the award during an onstage convention ceremony and received a plaque and an award of $4,000.

The Star Farmer of America for 2007 hails from Kentucky, as Nocona Cook of Cordell came up short in his bid to be the Star Farmer of 2007- Nick Hardesty based his program on a high value crop- even without the government subsidies and piled up an impressive net worth as a result. He plans to raise an astounding (at least to this kid who grew up on a small tobacco farm in Central Kentucky) 290 acres of tobacco in 2008.

Oklahoma also got GREAT news on the Creed Competition as McKenzie Walta of the Kingfisher FFA Chapter advanced into the Finals of the Creed Contest- and is one of FOUR finalists in that competition that goes on Friday morning. We will know the results from both the Creed Contest and the Prepared Public Speaking Contest- the contest that Mason Jones was a Final Four Contestant in- on Friday evening.
We have more information on Chance Simpson and will continue to update our National FFA Convention page through the day on both Friday and Saturday- so go to the link below from time to time to see what is new and happening here in Indy!!!

Click here to go to our National FFA Convention page on our website-

Senate Ag Committee Passes Their Version of Farm Policy
On Thursday, the Senate Ag Committee passed their version of farm policy as the 2007 Farm Bill Debate passed another important mile marker. In the Committee's News release- Senator Harkin claimed that "The measure continues and improves farm income protection and makes historic investments for the future in energy, conservation, nutrition and rural development initiatives - all while staying within strict budget limits."

Reaction is already pouring in like flood waters- including comments from Acting Secretary of Agriculture Chuck Conner- he blasts it and says there is limited reform in this measure- in some cases even less than that found in the House version of the bill.

Last night, we had the chance to sit down with an Oklahoma farmer who was in the Committee room for the two days of debate and work- and we have our conversation with Terry Detrick, Vice President of the American Farmers and Ranchers linked on our special Farm Bill 2007 web page. We also have the Committee's News Release- we will have links to comments from Senator Harkin and Acting Secretary Conner and links to a whole host of groups on the passage of the bill out of Committee as the day wears on- so we suggest that you follow the link below to our web page to hear Terry and to review lots of opinions on how the Committee performed as Congress continues to craft new farm policy.

Click here for our special web page on the 2007 Farm Bill- at the top of the coverage on the Senate Ag Committee passing out the bill- you will find a link to the audio conversation we had with Terry Detrick of AFR.

What about $9.00 Corn?????
The Executive Director of the Oklahoma Pork Council continues to travel through Europe with a trade team from the US Pork Industry and he has been updating on some of the highlights- and he was told of high priced feed grains as a BIG concern in the southern European Union. "We traveled to Spain on Tuesday and met with Spanish pork industry and Ministry of Agriculture officials regarding the challenges they are facing. One of the things that stood out in my mind was the cost of a bushel of "maize" - that's corn to those of us from Oklahoma. Spanish pork producers are paying more than $9.00 per bushel for corn. I thought $3.40 was high. I can't even comprehend $9."

Roy Lee adds "We also spoke to them about animal welfare and they stressed the need for more scientific research on the subject. According to our counterparts in Spain, the EU does not make any decision without a scientific paper telling them what they should do. Today the "science" on animal welfare is all coming from the northern EU countries. If the EU is to make any changes to its plans to continue increasing animal welfare standards, Spanish producers tell us it will only be through increased funding for research and more scientific study.

Today we drove out to the Extremadura region of Western Spain to visit a farm that produces only Iberian pigs. The Iberian breed is black and does not look like any of the domestic pigs we have in the states. While that is different, what truly sets the pigs in this region apart from everywhere else is the feeding method and the processing methods for the ham. The "fattening" of the hogs takes place from October through February when the pigs are given a diet consisting of acorns from a tree called a "home oak." The pig eats the acorns off the ground as he roams through a light forest of the oak trees. The exercise the pig gets and the oils from the acorns help deposit fat in the muscles. The pigs are sent to market at 160 kg (approximately 350 pounds). It can take up to two years from the time the pig is born until he goes to market. The meat from the Iberian pigs is then cured and aged for two more years. That means it could be four years from the time a pig is born until his meat ends up in the supermarket. However, the wait might be worth it when the producers told us they could get as much as $500 per ham off these pigs. Think about a 20 pound ham selling for $500."

Roy Lee tells us they have moved on to a final stop- Paris and the chance to meet with officials of the OIE_ the International Body that deals with Animal Health.

As Litigation Hangs Over the Issue- Poultry Litter Problems being mitigated by those on the ground
24 months after the poultry industry publicly committed to the Oklahoma Scenic Rivers Commission to help fund programs to move poultry litter out of the Illinois River watershed, data suggests the goal of removing excess poultry litter from the river area either has been achieved or is virtually at that point In a letter soon to be provided to the Oklahoma Scenic Rivers Commission, BMPS, Inc. - the non-profit entity created to handle the day-to-day operations of hauling poultry litter out of the watershed - will report that 33,742 tons of litter was hauled out of the Arkansas side of the Illinois River basin between September 2006 and August of 2007, while 40,514 tons of litter was hauled out of the watershed on the Oklahoma side.

In a fact sheet distributed to the Scenic Rivers Commission in 2006, the Oklahoma Secretary of the Environment's office concluded 124,878 tons of poultry litter could be land applied in the watershed before exceeding estimated crop needs, citing a 2006 study from the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture.

Here in 2007- the number of poultry houses int he watershed is down by almost 300 compared to just a few years ago- we now have about 1650 poultry houses, which according to the Eucha-Spavinaw Watershed Management Team- and according to their figures, each of those houses produce about 120 tons of litter annually. Do the math and you get right at 199,000 tons of poultry litter annually. Subtract the 74,000 tons of litter hauled out of the watershed over the past twelve months- and you come up with exactly 66 tons of more litter in the wateshed than what the Secretary of the Environment says could be land applied. In addition, I know that there has been some litter hauled out by entities other than BMPS and those numbers may or may not be in the BMPS totals.

It is interesting to note that the Oklahoma Conservation Commission is taking over the administration of the poultry litter hauling on the Oklahoma side of the Illinois River watershed. Rick Stubblefield, one of the Commissioners of the Oklahoma Scenic Rivers COmmission, commented he is not concerned with what entity is managing the poultry litter hauling program. But he did offer a caveat. "BMPS has clearly established a minimum standard - 40,514 tons of poultry litter hauled out of the Oklahoma side of the Illinois River watershed. I have a lot of respect for the Conservation Commission, but they have got to move at least the 40,514 tons that BMPS was moving."

Click here to read the letter from the BMPS to the Oklahoma Scenic River Commission.

The Care and Feeding of Brand New Baby Alfalfa.
Getting a new stand of alfalfa up and running is what the October OSU Forages Newsletter is all about. OSU's John Caddel tells us that when it comes to a new stand of alfalfa, early management will pay big dividends later.

Caddel adds that weed management is especially important- especially if you intend to sell a premium product into a dairy operation, for example. Scouting not just for weeds- but for insects as well is essential in order to have a chance of producing high quality alfalfa.

John has helped assemble the latest Forages Newsletter- that emphasizes the need to really keep your eyeballs on those just seeded fields of alfalfa- we have the link to that newsletter below if you are looking at establishing a new stand of this high quality forage- it will be worth your time to check it out.

Click here for the October issue of the OSU Forages Newsletter.

No US Beef to South Korea until we turn the calendar say hello to 2008.
Phil Seng, President of the US Meat Export Federation, says flatly we are done with any sales of US beef into South Korea the balance of this calendar year. Since the South Koreans suspended their inspections of US Beef until new protocols are put in place- and that there is no way that we will get new protocols until after the elections planned in that country December 19.

Seng believes that the US government probably missed their chance to get it done in late summer by talking only about completely lining up with the OIE standards- while South Korea was talking about a step by step process and had offered to consider thirty month of age beef- bone in and boneless- but with a long list of things they wanted to call SRMs- specified risk materials. Our negotiators have balked at that- and then the South Korean inspectors found box after box with various pieces of bones- wiping up the anti US beef crowd- and boxing their government into a corner of having to show they are being tough with the US on this issue before they could ever step up and offer a partial loaf of reopening.

Phil goes into detail as to why he doesn't blame the packers for this situation- and who he seems to point the finger of blame at- although in a very low key manner. Seng is our guest once again on the Beef Buzz for this Friday- heard on radio stations across the state on the Radio Oklahoma Network, linked on our web site and linked below on this daily e-mail. Click below and take a listen.

Click here for the Friday Beef Buzz on RON, featuring special guest Phil Seng of the USMEF

Getting Close to a Sell Out- the Bud Williams Marketing Workshop in two weeks in Tulsa
If you are losing sleep over the ups and downs of the cattle market, you may want to think about the Bud Williams Cattle Marketing School that will be taught by our friend Ann Barnhardt. Ann says that if "you are tired of breaking even on cattle - and feeling fortunate to have done so- and if you are you ready to control your own destiny in the cattle markets and be CONSISTENTLY PROFITABLE- then you are ready for the Bud Williams Livestock Marketing School at the Tulsa Airport Holiday Inn on November 9th and 10th.

Ann tells us that the real key is what you pay for the cattle you buy- that if you buy cattle for too much money- it's like hoping a lottery ticket will pay for your retirement. And she adds there are quite a number of things she will be teaching those in attendance on the 9th and 10th of November- some of the concepts covered at Bud Williams Marketing Schools include:
How to maximize cash flow while minimizing market risk. She contends that the cash flow from a livestock operation can be just as regular as any job and just as secure as any job "in town".
How to identify the best buys in today's market.
How to identify the classes of cattle that are the most overpriced and should be sold immediately.
Why grass in reserve is as good as money in the bank
How to know if owning cattle through the feedlot will pay before you do it.

Ann says space is limited to 50 and a sell-out is expected, so call 1-8777994577 toll free or go their website for the Bud Williams Marketing School, which is linked below.

Click here for the Bud Williams Marketing School website- then click on the button in the upper right hand side of the page that says "Schools" for more information.

Our thanks to Midwest Farm Shows, Cusack Meats and Farm Credit of East Central Oklahoma for their support of our daily Farm News Update. For your convenience, we have our sponsors' websites linked at the top of the email- check them out and let these folks know you appreciate the support of this daily email, as their sponsorship helps us keep this arriving in your inbox on a regular basis!

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