From: Ron Hays [] on behalf of Ron Hays []
Sent: Monday, August 25, 2008 04:25
Subject: Oklahoma's Farm News Update
Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Monday August 25, 2008!
A service of Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, Farm Credit Associations of Oklahoma and Midwest Farm Shows!
-- Friday's Cattle on Feed Numbers Somewhat Bullish- Based on Lighter Placements Than Expected.
-- Multiple Ag Groups Come Under Common Banner- Calling on Congress to Deal with the Railroads.
-- Oklahoma Wheat Producer Don Schieber on the Job- in Portugal!
-- Feed Grain Price Volatility Keeps Pork Industry Off Balance
-- Oklahoma Cotton Crop Set Up to Need Another Warm September
-- How to Make (or lose) Money in the Cattle Business.
-- This Week on our Calendar- Farm Bureau Area Meetings, Wheatland Stocker and more.
-- 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 excited to have as one of our new sponsors for the daily email Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, with 64 years of progress through producer ownership. Call Brandon Winters at 405-232-7555 for more information about rotating some of your winter wheat acres into winter canola this year- and check out the full story on PCOM on their website by clicking here.

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!
And our email this morning is also a service of Midwest Farm Shows, producer of the annual Tulsa Farm Show held each December, as well as the springtime Southern Plains Farm Show in Oklahoma City. 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.

Friday's Cattle on Feed Numbers Somewhat Bullish- Based on Lighter Placements Than Expected.
The Friday Cattle on Feed Report from USDA offered one surprise- lower placements than the trade had expected. Traders say that could prove to be bullish for the deferred contact months in the Monday futures trade.

The pre report guess on placements was around six to seven percent above a year ago, based on several sets of pre report guesses that were recorded. The actual figure from USDA came in at 102% of a year ago. The marketings number was as expected at 102%, while the on-feed number as of August first stands 4% under a year ago- again right about where the trade had placed their bets.

Our own Ed Richards caught up with Tom Leffler of Leffler Commodities- and we have Tom's take on the Cattle on Feed numbers as reported by Uncle Sam this past Friday afternoon- use the link below to jump to that audio review of the Cattle on Feed numbers.

Click here for the Cattle on Feed Report Audio with Ed Richards and Tom Leffler

Multiple Ag Groups Come Under Common Banner- Calling on Congress to Deal with the Railroads.
Diverse interests within the U.S. agriculture sector including the American Farm Bureau and the National Farmers Union have agreed to join forces to stop the railroads' monopoly stranglehold on rural America. The groups are calling on Congress to pass reform legislation to end the railroads' hidden tax on products shipped by rail. This hidden tax, which results from the railroads' abuse of their monopoly power, hits farmers and rural America especially hard, because of their reliance on freight rail transportation for shipping and receiving goods.

"Rural America is getting fleeced by the railroads, one shipment at a time," said Glenn English, Chairman of Consumers United for Rail Equity and CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association(and former long time Oklahoma Congressman). "Rural areas are more likely to be served by only one railroad, and railroads use that unrestrained market power to drive up prices with overcharges on everything from grain shipments for food and fuel to coal for electricity."
The coalition includes AFBF, the nation's largest general farm organization as well as the second largest general farm group- the National Farmers Union. Also weighing in with their support of rail reform legislation are the American Coalition for Ethanol, as well as the Alliance for Rural America, a broad 13-member coalition whose member organizations include the American Corn Growers Association, the National Farmers Organization, and the American Agriculture Movement.

American Farm Bureau President Bob Stallman believes that Congress should pass the Railroad Antitrust Enforcement Act before it completes its work this year. "American agriculture depends on the railroad system, and agricultural producers are frequently captive rail customers and experience both unreliable service and exorbitantly high rates from the railroads," Stallman said. "Freight railroads must be subject to our nation's antitrust laws so that prices for shipping agriculture commodities via rail can be fair and reasonable."

The Railroad Antitrust Enforcement Act (H.R. 1650 in the House and S. 772 in the Senate) has passed both the House and Senate Judiciary Committees by a bipartisan voice vote. It awaits action by the full House and Senate.
The legislation would end the railroads' exemption from antitrust law, to which virtually all other U.S. businesses must adhere. This exemption allows railroads to avoid competition and therefore keep their shipping rates artificially and unfairly high, creating higher prices for U.S. consumers.

Click here for the CURE website- Consumers United for Rail Equity.

Oklahoma Wheat Producer Don Schieber on the Job- in Portugal!
He's the new kid on the block- but Don Schieber from Kay County in north central Oklahoma is already making a splash as a part of the officer team of US Wheat Associates, the market promotion arm internationally for US wheat producers. Schieber was on hand at the US Wheat biennial World Staff Conference in Portugal earlier this month after joining the officer team as Secretary-Treasurer back in July.

The weekly Wheat Letter from US Wheat reports that Schieber represented American wheat producers as he recognized the incredible length of service that several key players have given as the ones who tell the US Wheat story day after day and year after year. US Wheat Associates is celebrating 50 years of telling the US wheat producer's story.

The Letter says "In his welcoming remarks at the start of the conference, Schieber asked USW staffers who had served the organization for 30 or more years to join him in front of the group. He then stood between seven individuals and thanked them from his heart for their service to U.S. wheat producers.
The US Wheat staff at the meeting that Schieber recognized included:
Rick Callies, Vice President of Marketing Programs, Arlington, VA;
Roy Chung, Bakery Consultant, Singapore;
Mitch Skalicky, Vice President, Regional Director, Mexico City, Mexico;
Hassan Abdel-Ghaffar, Regional Marketing Director, Cairo, Egypt;
Ms. Linda de Hoog, Office and Administrative Manager, Rotterdam, The Netherlands;
Jim Frahm, Vice President of Planning, Arlington, VA;
and Alvaro de la Fuente, Vice President, Regional Director, Santiago, Chile.

Feed Grain Price Volatility Keeps Pork Industry Off Balance
Hog producers in Oklahoma and around the country are very concerned about the roller coaster grain prices that are becoming the norm as they worry about the rising cost of raising hogs the balance of this year and into 2009 as well. The cost of production is so high that profitability will be elusive in the coming year- Roy Lee Lindsey of the Oklahoma Pork Council estimates that we may see three months profitable out of twelve in 2009, based on expected cost of production and current futures prices for lean hogs.

Lindsey says the floor that the renewable fuel standard provides for feed grain producers assures that feed grain prices will not retreat anytime soon. He also worries about the economies of scale that may harm smaller Oklahoma pig producers- those that can deliver four hundred to six hundred pigs per week are not large enough to supply corporate owned finishing pens that work mostly in units of a thousand pigs.

The brightest spot for the pork industry in the US is the export market. Exports have risen over the last couple of years dramatically- and that has held up prices for finished hogs.
We have our conversation with Roy Lee Lindsey of the Oklahoma Pork Council linked on our website below- it's our Top Ag Story for this Monday morning.

Click here for our pork profitability story from our website- WWW.OklahomaFarmReport.Com

Oklahoma Cotton Crop Set Up to Need Another Warm September
Vic Schoonover of the NTOK organization provides us with the latest on the 2008 cotton crop and this update from Dr. JC Banks, Oklahoma's state cotton specialist:
"A welcome rainy period was received in most of the Oklahoma cotton growing area August 14-18. Oklahoma State University Extension Cotton Specialist Dr. J.C. Banks says the moisture was needed badly and tells us what it will do to this year's cotton: "The dryland areas in the state were really suffering and the cotton really responded to the rain. Almost all of the cotton was at or near the cutout stage of growth but had continued to bloom and some small squares were on the plant. If the cotton was under severe stress, small bolls within seven to 10 days of blooming have probably shed due to stress prior to the rain, but squares will continue to develop and the cotton is likely blooming again. It is a general rule that cotton blooms formed after September 1 on well-fruited cotton will not have much chance of making a harvestable boll, but most of the cotton did not have much of a fruit load at the time of the rain.

"If there were not many bolls on the plant, the plant will try to hold onto as many late developing bolls as possible. If we have a warmer than usual fall and if we can stay away from early freezes, the cotton should come back and produce an adequate yield. Our irrigated cotton went into the rainy period with a heavy boll load in most areas. This rainy period had about four days without any sunshine and this, combined with cooler weather, has caused many small bolls less than 10 days old to be shed. Again, there are many blooming sites, and the cotton has already started blooming again, but we will only have about one and a half weeks of additional blooming. This can add a lot of bolls prior to the first week in September, but we will have a split fruiting cycle that can delay harvest. Again, we need a good warm fall like we have had the last two years.

Dr. Banks adds that IPM Specialist Terry Pitts has found a plant pathogen by the name of alternaria in some of the cotton fields in southwest Oklahoma. This disease seems to show up when late season cotton is suddenly subjected to a very wet period of rainfall and cooler temperatures for several days. If you have any questions, please contact Terry Pitts at 1- 580-482-8880.

Here's a link for more Agronomic updates from JC Banks and Terry Pitts on the OSU Southwest Center website.

How to Make (or lose) Money in the Cattle Business.
It's been a while since we had bounced over to Ann Barnhardt's website- but we did so over the weekend and she continues to blast away at the marketing ignorance that she believes is dominant in the cattle industry.

She regularly offers up examples of what she calls "Fun with math." These are examples of how to both make money in trading cattle, as well as losing tons of money. In one of her blog entries at the end of this past week- she got on a roll and assembled four examples from the Oklahoma National Stockyards from last Monday.

One of the winning trades was pointed at the feedlot end of the business where the following pair of trades were laid out:
SELL 1350# fat steers last Friday in the Southern Plains at $100
BUY 1065# top-quality steers at OKC 8/18 at $90.50
Return on the Gain = $1.35 per pound
Profit per Head with an ALL INCLUSIVE cost of gain of $1.15 = $57.00.
She also showed a trade where those same $1 per pound steers were sold to the packer- a smaller light set of yearlings were bought for $115 (weighing 721 pounds) and based on the cost of gain- you were looking at a almost $60 per head loss going into the deal

Ann did offer an example of selling those lighter yearlings:
SELL 721# top-quality steers @ OKC at $115.00
BUY 670# top-quality steers (CALVES) @ OKC at $104.88
Return on the gain = $2.60 per pound
Profit per head with a $1.20 cost of gain = $71.40.
Barnhardt writes "The money is always there. And the potential losses are always there." I always enjoy reading through Ann's blog- and there are regularly these types of scenarios that she runs- proving you can be a marketing genius or marketing fool- take your pick.

Here's Ann Barnhardt's website if you want to check her math.(She does Bud Williams' Marketing Schools around the country)

This Week on our Calendar- Farm Bureau Area Meetings, Wheatland Stocker and more.
After week of hiatus, the Oklahoma Farm Bureau plans on wrapping up their August district meetings with three locations set starting on Tuesday. On Tuesday, there will be the first of two District 4 meetings in Ardmore, with a second District 4 meeting planned the next day in Duncan. Then on Thursday, the final OFB District meeting is set for Ada. We have details of these meetings listed on our calendar page that is linked below.

Thursday, the signing ceremony is planned between Conservation groups and Western Farmers Electric Cooperative as WFEC plans to buy carbon offsets developed from farming practices in the North Canadian watershed- the 10 AM meeting is being held in Geary.

At the end of the week, the annual Wheatland Stocker Conference is planned for the Cherokee Strip Conference Center in Enid on Friday. An outstanding program is lined up- with one of our favorite cattle market watchers, Jim Robb of the Livestock Market Information Center, scheduled during the morning session.

For all of these events- and more happening in the world of agriculture, click here to jump to our calendar page on WWW.OklahomaFarmReport.Com

Our thanks to Midwest Farm Shows, Farm Credit Associations of Oklahoma and Producers Cooperative Oil Mill 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!
The Woodward market reported 5,115 cattle for their Friday run, with yearling prices weaker- steers were $1 to $2 lower and feeder heifers $2 to $2.50 cheaper. The seven to eight weight steers brought $111 to $116.50, while 800 to 900 pound steer yearlings were sold from $107 to $111.75. Here is the link to the USDA Woodward report- it should be updated between 8 and 9 am on Monday morning- our numbers direct from the market reporter and before you can find them anywhere else on the internet.

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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