From: Ron Hays []
Sent: Thursday, May 01, 2008 07:01
Subject: Oklahoma's Farm News Update
Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Thursday May 1, 2008!
A service of The Oklahoma Bioenergy Center, KIS Futures and American Farmers & Ranchers.
-- Waiting for the Conference Committee to Resume Public Sessions...
-- Chelsea Clifton of Kingfisher to Lead Oklahoma FFA in the Coming Year!
-- On May Day- It's Time to Celebrate the Hamburger- All Month Long!
-- Rising Food Prices a Complex Issue
-- One Livestock Producer Responds to Comments We Quoted Wednesday.
-- Thanks for the Hospitality!!!
-- Kervin-Hall-Coyote Hills Heifer Sale Set for this Saturday in Chattanooga, Oklahoma!
-- Checking 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 KIS Futures as a regular sponsor of our daily E-Mail. KIS Futures provides Oklahoma Farmers & Ranchers with futures & options hedging services in the livestock and grain markets- Click here for their "new look" website or call them at 1-800-256-2555.

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Waiting for the Conference Committee to Resume Public Sessions...
It is looking unlikely that the Conference Committee on the Farm Bill will be able to meet today- as the scoring on the complex reforms proposed in this latest go-round will take some time by the Congressional Budget Office. Meanwhile, we got a little cold water thrown out on those advocating a multi- tier payment limitation plan- the water being supplied by Deputy Secretary at USDA Chuck Conner- ""The Press is reporting that Congress has devised a new and highly complicated payment limit plan. This plan would result in continuation of farm subsidy payments to individuals with extremely high incomes.
This is not reform and does not move Congress closer to a Farm Bill that the President would sign."

The planned limits in the new five-year farm bill are complex. Farmers who have more than 750-thousand dollars a year in non-farm income would no longer be eligible for crop subsidies in 2009. The income ceiling would drop to 500-thousand by 2011. That cap is intended to prevent so-called hobby farmers from collecting subsidies.
Different caps would apply to agriculture-related income. Farmers who make less than 950-thousand a year from agriculture would still be able to collect federal dollars. But for every 100-thousand a year they make above that amount, they would lose 10 percent of their direct payments, which farmers get no matter what crop prices are like.

We will have a chance to talk with Congressman Frank Lucas early this morning- and we will post his comments to our Farm Bill website page- which is linked below. And- we will be following the direction of the farm bill saga during the day today- and will update that page several times as needed- so drop by and check in from time to time.

Click here for the latest on the Farm Bill scene on our Farm Bill 2007 Website.

Chelsea Clifton of Kingfisher to Lead Oklahoma FFA in the Coming Year!
Chelsea Clifton, member of the Kingfisher FFA chapter, will lead the more than 24,000 members of the Oklahoma FFA Association for 2008-09. Members elected the 19-year-old during the 82nd annual Oklahoma FFA Convention on April 30. The freshman agribusiness major at Oklahoma State University is the daughter of Shane and Mandy Clifton.

Seven additional FFA members will join Clifton on the 2008-09 Oklahoma FFA officer team: Chasity Beasler, Wellston FFA, secretary; Carly Schnaithman, Garber FFA, reporter; Stasha Harp, Kansas FFA, northeast district vice president; Riley Pagett, Woodward FFA, northwest district vice president; Blake Matlock, Tecumseh FFA, central district vice president; Amy Peel, Wetumka FFA, southeast district vice president; and Sarah Reasnor, Elgin FFA, southwest district vice president.

Chelsea has a great deal of success as a speaker in the FFA- and was one of the leaders of the Kingfisher FFA Livestock Judging Team that simply ran away from every other team in the United States the fall of 2006 at the National Convention!
Meanwhile, I judged at least two of the other new officers on Tuesday- and Sarah Reasnor of Elgin was the winner of the Prepared Public Speaking contest at this year's Convention- so she will be an asset to this team for sure.

On May Day- It's Time to Celebrate the Hamburger- All Month Long!
I must admit- I like a burger that has a lot of the major food groups included- a fresh bun made with Oklahoma wheat- fresh lettuce and tomato and maybe a little onion- a slice of bacon is always nice as well as cheese. But the star of the show is that perfectly cooked hot and juicy slab of ground beef- right in the middle of it all! Well, for those of you that are saying Amen Brother- Preach On!- the month of May is for you- as it is National Hamburger Month!

For cattle producers, ground beef is an important way to market a lot of our beef carcass. Recognizing that not all ground beef goes to making the perfect burger, however, two years ago the checkoff-funded ground beef initiative kicked off with these things in mind: improving consumer perceptions of ground beef's nutritional value and health benefits; increasing availability and access to ground beef and ground beef products; communicating positive messages about ground beef; and, adding value through processing improvements and product innovation. One component of the ground beef initiative included testing consumer appeal of an extra lean burger patty, where it received extremely high consumer marks.

And the ground beef initiative nutrition message is resonating with consumers: consumers bought an additional 85 million pounds of 78 percent lean (or better) ground beef at the grocery store in 2007 when compared to 2004. The fastest growing subcategory during this period was 85 to 89 percent lean beef. And, a 95 percent extra-lean patty now is available to school foodservice and households where leanness is an important buying consideration.
Still, no matter how you slice it, hamburgers still are the most popular beef item for consumers. Americans consumed approximately 11.9 billion burgers in 2007. Forty-one percent of Americans eat burgers at least once a week and 85 percent eat burgers once a month.
So thanks to our beef producers who do their part to produce that perfect beef patty that helps make a great hamburger to enjoy here during National Hamburger Month!

One more Hamburger note- our colleague at Griffin Communications in OKC- Doug Werner of KWTV News9- gobbled down seven burgers from the seven establishments that are listed from Oklahoma in a new book listing the best burger joints in America- well actually he was nibbling at the end, but he has a great video piece that we have linked below- and he mentions that there is a "Burger" celebration tomorrow and Saturday in El Reno that you may want to go check out!

Click here for the Doug Werner Story on Seven Burgers in Seven Hours across Oklahoma!

Rising Food Prices a Complex Issue
Ethanol is taking the blame for rising food costs. And consumers are being reminded of that allegation in many ways, including billboards and signs at grocery store checkouts. At many checkouts grocers are saying don't blame me. American Farm Bureau Federation President Bob Stallman says when it comes to rising food costs ethanol is - not the culprit that American Consumers are being led to believe. Stallman adds - we want to make sure that America's consumers have a clear picture of this volatile and very complicated food price situation.

Farm Bureau analysis of the costs of food production and marketing shows petroleum-based energy is the primary factor driving domestic food prices. Farm Bureau says - forty-four percent of rising food costs is due to energy costs. Stallman points out that - after many commodities leave the farm gate, high costs for energy, fuel and transportation are added and passed onto the consumer. He added - increased retail prices can especially be seen on highly processed foods.

As for a food shortage - Stallman says - I want to assure everyone that in the United States of America, there is not a food shortage. He says - our nation's productive and efficient farm families continue to produce a full range of healthy and abundant foods and we will continue to do so. Stallman said world food prices are escalating because of other complex issues such as growing world demand, particularly in nations such as China and India, as well as lower supplies due to droughts elsewhere in the world. The Farm Bureau President cautioned against governments enacting policies that would intervene in markets, saying such measures would be counterproductive to securing prices that are more moderate globally.

One Livestock Producer Responds to Comments We Quoted Wednesday.
We got an email response to the comments that were offered to us by a Panhandle grain producer that we quoted in our Wednesday letter- critical of Tyson's Dick Bonds who called for a change in our federal government's ethanol policy. Lonnie Hoelscher of Bartlesville offers this response-

I think Mr. Detrick is missing the key reason that livestock producers are struggling with corn prices. He contends that the "feeding industry is having to pay what the rest are willing to give." That simply is not accurate. Livestock producers are not getting blenders tax credits and we don't have tariffs in place to keep out foreign meat products.

"I believe most livestock producers are supportive of biofuels and the efforts to create greater on-farm income for all agricultural producers. However, we cannot compete in a system where the price we pay for grain is not subsidized and the price the ethanol manufacturers are paying is highly subsidized.
We are not opposed to competition for grain. We are opposed to unfair competition where one side has a huge financial advantage through tax credits and tariffs on imports.
If this is truly about simple competition for grain, then I would encourage the ethanol industry to allow the blenders tax credit to expire and to eliminate the tariff on imported ethanol. When that happens, we'll stop blaming ethanol for increasing our cost of production."

Thanks for the Hospitality!!!
They had a great crowd at the Eastern Oklahoma Ag Trade Show yesterday in Poteau- and we appreciate the warm welcome that we got from so many folks. LeFlore County and the surrounding area has ample moisture as we begin the month of May- and they are hoping for a good wheat harvest and expect many of those acres to go back into some double crop soybeans.

One of the afternoon speakers at the Eastern Oklahoma Ag Trade Show that attracted some 500 to Poteau was Dr. Dave Sparks, Extension Vet for OSU. We talked with Dr. Sparks about not so much what he was visiting with the cattle producers in Poteau yesterday- but about this series of Agroterrorism Meetings that he has helped set up that are now underway at locations all across the state. We have our conversation with Dr. Sparks linked on our website and that link is provided below.

It's a fascinating topic and one that we will be spending more time on next week as we travel to the APHIS facility in Maryland and meet with USDA and Homeland Security officials- along with a select number of other ag trade media- to talk about FMD scenarios and how the ag media could help in a response if we ever should have Foot and Mouth Disease rear its ugly head here in the US. We look forward to reporting more on that event the middle of next week.

Click here for Ron and Dr. Dave Sparks talking Agroterrorism.

Kervin-Hall-Coyote Hills Heifer Sale Set for this Saturday in Chattanooga, Oklahoma!
There will be more than 200 females to be sold on Saturday May Third at the Coyote Hills Ranch in Chattanooga, Oklahoma. These 200 ladies will be sold as 257 lots and will include SIXTY purebred pairs, 41 Lim-Flex Pairs, 24 Fall Bred Purebred Heifers and 31 Fall Bred Lim-Flex Females.

Ken Holloway of Coyote Hills Ranch writes in his welcome for the catalog to this sale that "the Kervin- Hall-CHR Female Sale represents a cross section of what the program is striving to produce. You will find a strong offering of Limousin genetics that are bred to perform under what some would call less than ideal conditions - namely the hot, arid conditions of southwest Oklahoma with an annual rainfall of 27 inches or less. Many times it all comes the same weekend in May. You will find females that wean a high percentage of the weight in high quality weaned calves annually. You will find genetics that represent some of the breed's most popular proven sires as well as some of the new sires. You will find fullbloods, purebreds and Lim-Flex females all performing under similar conditions. If they do not perform they have already taken their place in America's food chain."

We have details linked below for you about this upcoming sale on May 3. Click below to be taken to the Kervin-Hall-Coyote Hills website where you can either look at the online catalog or download a print version of the catalog in PDF format that you can print out if you care to do so.

Click here for details about the Kervin-Hall-Coyote Hills Female Sale Set for THIS Saturday May 3.

Our thanks to American Farmers & Ranchers, KIS Futures and the Oklahoma Bioenergy Center 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

Checking the Markets...
Beans, Corn and Cotton all adavanced on Wednesday- while old crop May KC wheat was up with the other contracts on hard red winter wheat lower.
We also had another lower day for crude oil futures- which have now fallen back to the $113 neighborhood.

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. Previous Day's Energy Market Recap- also from Country Hedging
The National Daily Feeder & Stocker Cattle Summary- as prepared by USDA.
The National Daily Slaughter Cattle Summary- as prepared by USDA.

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

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