From: Ron Hays [] on behalf of Ron Hays []
Sent: Thursday, December 11, 2008 6:20 AM
Subject: Oklahoma's Farm News Update
Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Thursday December 11, 2008!
A service of Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, Farm Credit Associations of Oklahoma and American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company!
-- Congressman Frank Lucas Will Be Top Republican on House Ag Committee in New Congressional Term
-- Congressman Cole Quick To Praise His House Colleague
-- How Dry We Are
-- American Soybean Association and United Soybean Board Battling Over Legality of Soybean Checkoff Use
-- Tulsa Farm Show Begins Three Day Run Today- and the Show Looks Better Than Ever!
-- South Korea Consumer Magazines Beat the Drum for US Beef
-- The 11th Exposure Female Sales Set for a Week From Saturday
-- Let's Check the Markets!

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 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!

It's also great to have the Farm Credit Associations of Oklahoma with us regularly as an Email Sponsor- Financing Oklahoma is their business! Check out their website which shows their locations statewide by clicking here!
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Congressman Frank Lucas Will Be Top Republican on House Ag Committee in New Congressional Term
As anticipated by many Congressional observers, Republican leadership announced Wednesday afternoon that Oklahoma Congressman Frank Lucas would serve as the Republican Leader of the House Committee on Agriculture for the 111th Congress. Lucas succeeds Virginia Rep. Bob Goodlatte, who was required to step down by Republican Conference rules after three terms as his party's leader on the Agriculture Committee, serving two as Chairman.

As the Ranking Member on the Agriculture Committee, Lucas will serve as a policy leader for all areas of the committee's jurisdiction. The jurisdiction of the House Agriculture Committee includes oversight of USDA and its various agencies and programs, such as the Conservation Reserve Program, Disaster Assistance, Rural Development, Livestock Compensation, and Crop Insurance and Food Safety. In addition, the committee has jurisdiction over the Food and Drug Administration and the Commodities Futures Trading Commission.

"I have long served as a strong voice for production agriculture," stated Lucas. "As the Ranking Member of the House Agriculture Committee, I will continue to work with both Republicans and Democrats to ensure that farmers and ranchers have the necessary resources to not only survive, but to thrive in this nation."

Lucas and the House Ag Committee will be facing a lot of challenges early on in 2009 as the Obama Administration takes over the Executive Branch January 20- and may well push for a budget reconciliation package that could threaten the reduced levels of spending for farm programs that were set in the 2008 farm law.
While we were on the road as the word came from Washington of Mr. Lucas officially becoming the ranking member- we asked one of our RON news editors to pose some questions on our behalf- we have those answers from Congressman Lucas on our website and have the link to that page below- Congressman Lucas has some challenges ahead if he hopes to defend traditional farm programs in an increasingly hostile environment in the US House and he talks about those challenges in these comments.

Click here for audio and more on Congressman Lucas moving to the ranking chair of the House Ag Committee.

Congressman Cole Quick To Praise His House Colleague
Oklahoma Congressman Tom Cole was quick to recognize and comment on Congressman Frank Lucas and his move into the top Republican leadership spot on the House Ag Committee. Congressman Cole offered the following statement in a news release on Wednesday afternoon:

"The elevation of Frank Lucas to the position of Ranking Member of the House Committee on Agriculture is not only great news for Oklahoma's farmers and ranchers, it is great news for agricultural producers throughout America. Congressman Lucas has long been a mentor to many members of Congress on these issues and his knowledge and expertise are going to greatly benefit the House Agriculture Committee.

"Congressman Lucas is known as one of the most thoughtful and hard working members of Congress, and one of his greatest attributes that will guide his leadership at the Committee, is that he is a rancher in practice and at heart. Having a genuine Oklahoma Cattleman as the Ranking Member of this important committee means America's farmers and ranchers will have a knowledgeable and passionate advocate at the highest levels of agricultural policy making."

How Dry We Are
The mapping of moisture (and temperature) conditions in Oklahoma courtesy of the Oklahoma Climatological Survey shows that we have been extremely dry over the past 30-45 days in most parts of the state except for South Central/Southwest (and parts of the Panhandle) where they never have been in an excess moisture condition this fall. They are currently showing moderate drought conditions.

Most areas of the state are off to a good start with this year's wheat crop, however, there are some notable exceptions. First, as mentioned above, South Central/Southwest Oklahoma where a lack of surface moisture has limited forage production for the early planted wheat and has limited emergence for later planted wheat Many of the fields in this area do not have the stand or development we would like to see this time of year. Second, we have many areas showing the stress symptoms of low pH soils (most likely not enough use of Phosphorous as in the past (as a pH aid) which has aggravated the problem). And third, some insect damage has cause replanting, but these areas are limited in nature.

Mark Hodges of the Oklahoma Wheat Commission, who offered these "dry" thoughts to us and others adds that "Last, we would welcome a good "drink of water" on all the wheat planted as it would help improve our conditions across the state, Unfortunately, we are entering the historically driest time of the year in Oklahoma."

To keep up on rainfall and other weather observations- the web place to park is on the Agweather Page of the Oklahoma Mesonet- click here to jump there.

American Soybean Association and United Soybean Board Battling Over Legality of Soybean Checkoff Use
John Hoffman, President of the American Soybean Association, confirms that - Serious ethical, legal, and financial allegations have been raised about how farmer checkoff funds and program activities are being conducted. Hoffman, a soybean producer from Waterloo, Iowa, adds, - These significant allegations have caused ASA to ask the Inspector General to conduct an investigation and audit so that the basis of the allegations can be impartially investigated to find the truth.

Allegations include the improper and wasteful expenditure of both checkoff and federal funds; potential evasion of mandated salary and administrative spending caps by USB; conflicts of interests at USB; use of checkoff funds for prohibited purposes by USB; and wasteful and excessive spending by USB.

While not attributed to anyone specifically, the United Soybean Board did issue the following statement on Wednesday afternoon: The American Soybean Association's allegations against the United Soybean Board regarding mismanagement of checkoff dollars are categorically untrue." USB notes the nation's soybean farmers enjoy record demand domestically and internationally thanks to the responsible efforts of those farmers serving voluntarily on the board. USB also welcome a USDA Office of Inspector General audit of it operations, contractor operations and projects if the department believes it's necessary.

Our coverage of ASA and USB facing off over the soybean checkoff can be found at this link on our website- it includes a link back to a lot of the charges by the ASA as well as the complete statement in reply by the USB.

Tulsa Farm Show Begins Three Day Run Today- and the Show Looks Better Than Ever!
One of the first things I noticed on Wednesday afternoon as a I walked around the huge indoor Quik Trip facility at Expo Square in Tulsa were how many new exhibitors will be a part of the 2008 Tulsa Farm Show. You will find folks from all other Oklahoma- Kansas- Missouri- Arkansas and Texas that have come in to show off their goods and services at this 2008 event.

There is an excellent lineup of seminars and activities that will spice up your time at the show. The AFR Farm Bill Informational Meeting will be held this morning, beginning at 10:30 AM- OSU Extension has several seminars planned the next couple of days and there are the old standbys that are always good- cattle working demonstrations, Craig Cameron working his horse training magic and the Oklahoma Farm Bureau talking farm safety for kids and adults.

We sat down and chatted with the long time promotions manager of Midwest Farm Shows- John Sampson about the fifteenth annual renewal of the Tulsa get together. Midwest now has two shows here in Oklahoma as they have gotten the Tulsa show up and running in a very profitable way and are continuing to build the Southern Plains Farm Show held each April in Oklahoma City. You can hear our comments with John Sampson about this 2008 show, some of the events including one of Sampson's favorites- the Friday Cattle Handling Skills Contest and a look at how some of their other shows have been going earlier this year. Click below and take a listen- we have it as a featured Ag Perspectives Podcast.

Click here for our conversation with John Sampson of Midwest Farm Shows.

South Korea Consumer Magazines Beat the Drum for US Beef
Two prominent South Korean women's magazines have featured U.S. beef in their December issues, signaling a possible change in the public attitude toward U.S. beef in this key export market. Woman Chosun and Woman Sense each produced lengthy and very positive articles in their current issues that are targeted to a key audience - the housewives who purchase groceries for family meals. One editor already has reported that the articles have been positively received. The timing of the articles is fortuitous, coinciding with the return of U.S. beef to the "big box" retailers that serve Korean consumers

The 33-page full-color article in Woman Chosun, which has a circulation of 50,000, provides an overview of the U.S. beef industry with information on cattle feeding, processing, inspection and U.S. consumption trends. The article also provides 16 recipes that all utilize U.S. beef, including chuck eye roll, LA ribs, boneless short ribs, rib eye, brisket point, back ribs, bone-in chuck short ribs and brisket.
The 12-page full-color article in Woman Sense, which has a circulation of 80,000, featured U.S. beef menus from a number of prominent U.S. restaurants. The article also made the point that U.S. consumers happily consume our own beef - refuting an unfounded rumor that circulated in South Korean media and internet commentaries during the peak of anti-U.S. beef protests last summer.

We have more on this story on our website- and the link to the balance of report can be read by clicking on the link below.

Click here for more on South Korea Consumer Attitudes May Be Warming Up to US Beef Again

The 11th Exposure Female Sales Set for a Week From Saturday
The 11th Exposure Female Sale is set for Saturday, December 20 at 12:30 pm at the Exposure Sale Facility just east of Stillwater on Highway 51.

The Exposure Female Sale will be featuring over 200 Composite and Angus Spring bred Females- you will find the genetics package in these females that will improve your herd.

A sale that is known for its quality across the nation, featuring the Genetics of Collins, Griswold and Black. For more information call 800-975-6313 or go to the link we have below. The website has information on a cattle judging contest set for Friday the 19th, as well as details on the offering and info on video of a majority of the females to be sold on Saturday.

Click here for more on the 11th Exposure Female Sale coming up December 20 in Stillwater.

Our thanks to Farm Credit Associations of Oklahoma, Producers Cooperative Oil Mill and AFR 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!

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.

Click here to check out WWW.OklahomaFarmReport.Com

Let's Check the Markets!
OKC West in El Reno actually saw some stabilizing of yearling prices in their Wednesday trade- as they ended up with 4,470 cattle on December 10. Yearlings were steady to a dollar higher, while calves slipped on their market as they have in other markets all week long- dropping two to five dollars per hundredweight. Fivd to six hundred steer calves brought $88 to $104.50 while seven to nine hundred pound steer yearlings were all in a fairly tight range of $87 to $92. Click here for the full OKC West report on how things sold there yesterday.

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:
Our Daily Market Wrapup from the Radio Oklahoma Network with Ed Richards and Tom Leffler- analyzing the Futures Markets from the previous Day-
Ron on RON Markets as heard on K101 mornings with cash and futures reviewed- includes where the Cash Cattle market stands, the latest Feeder Cattle Markets Etc.
Previous Day's Wheat Market Recap- One Pager From Country Hedging- looks at all three US Wheat Futures Exchanges and the why of that day's market.
Daily Oklahoma Cash Grain Prices- As Reported by the Oklahoma Dept. of Agriculture. <
The National Daily Feeder & Stocker Cattle Summary- as prepared by USDA.
The National Daily Slaughter Cattle Summary- as prepared by USDA.
Finally, Here is the Daily Volume and Price Summary from the Texas Cattle Feeders Association.

God Bless! You can reach us at the following:
phone: 405-473-6144

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