From: Ron Hays [] on behalf of Ron Hays []
Sent: Monday, February 23, 2009 6:24 AM
Subject: Oklahoma's Farm News Update
Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Monday February 23, 2009
A service of Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, Midwest Farm Shows and Johnston Enterprises!
-- JBS Gives Up Negotiations with the Feds- Calls Off the Purchase of National Beef
-- Secretary Vilsack Sends His COOL Letter to Meat Industry- Volunteer to Do More (or else)
-- Wheat Disease Update- Dr. Bob Hunger on the Prowl
-- This Week- OACD and Commodity Classic and Jim Robb
-- NCBA Applaudes Vilsack on Allowing COOL Rule to Go Final
-- Cattle on Feed Very Uneventful
-- Glover Cattle Company Getting Ready For Annual Production Sale
-- 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. It is wonderful to have as a regular sponsor on our daily email Johnston Enterprises- proud to be serving agriculture across Oklahoma and around the world since 1893. For more on Johnston Enterprises- click here for their website!

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JBS Gives Up Negotiations with the Feds- Calls Off the Purchase of National Beef
Brazil's JBS, the world's largest beef producer and owner of JBS-Swift, has abandoned its attempt to take over U.S. meat company National Beef Packing Company LLC, saying it could not work out an agreement with U.S. authorities over terms of the deal. JBS became the No. 3 U.S. beef producer in 2008 when it bought the beef operations of Smithfield Foods Inc, which included beef plants and the Five Rivers Ranch cattle feeding operation. At that time it also tried to buy National Beef in a deal valued at $970 million in cash, stock and debt. Since then, the Brazilian company has been in talks with the U.S. Justice Department about selling assets in order to gain approval to buy National Beef.

But JBS said U.S. authorities insisted it sell two of its eight North American units so that it did not surpass the size of U.S. food giants Tyson Foods Inc (TSN.N) and Cargill Inc, after which "it decided not to go forward with the acquisition."

Premium Beef's Chief Executive Officer Steve Hunt says the Department of Justice lawsuit filed last fall to block the purchase was what led to the decision to call off the purchase. Still, Hunt says, - we are excited to continue the growth and success of our business on a stand-alone basis. National Beef CEO John Miller says this development has re-energized our management team. Miller added, - we are eagerly looking forward to building on our value-added model while continuing to focus on serving the needs of our customers.

We have more on this story on our website- including the declaration of victory by a couple of groups that called on the Department of Justice not to allow the sale to go through- and some comments from Steve Dittmer on those groups and his view on how they influenced the government's intercession.

Click here for more on the decision by JBS Swift to terminate efforts to buy National Beef LLC.

Secretary Vilsack Sends His COOL Letter to Meat Industry- Volunteer to Do More (or else)
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that the final rule for the Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) program will go into effect as scheduled on March 16th. He also released a letter inviting stakeholders to follow additional voluntary labeling practices. The rule, published in the Federal Register on Jan.15, 2009, has been under regulatory review by USDA pursuant to a Jan. 20, 2009, memorandum from the President's Chief of Staff.

However, Secretary Vilsack wants changes in the rules that the Bush Administration issued without having to go to the trouble of going through the full rule making process again. So, he has sent the letter we told you about last week was coming out to the meat industry- asking packers, processors and retailers to go beyond the rules and tighten up on the COOL implementation- or face a possible reopening of the rule down the road to "achieve Congressional intent."

We have more on Vilsack's authorization of the rules issued by the Bush Administration to go final, what his letter is asking the meat industry to do and what the 2008 Farm Law actually says- which you would assume is Congressional Intent. The Law does not seem to line up with what Vilsack wants to happen- especially when you are looking at the actual label and what country or countries may or may not be listed. More on this story can be had by clicking on our link below.

Click here to read more on the COOL rule, the COOL Letter and the COOL section of the 2008 Farm Law.

Wheat Disease Update- Dr. Bob Hunger on the Prowl
The mild temperatures may push our 2009 wheat crop into the growth mode fairly quickly- and where we have moisture- the stage may be set to see some flare-ups of foliar diseases. Dr. Bob Hunger of OSU has been out in his fields around Stillwater doing a little early season detective work- and he offers these observations:

"On Friday (Feb 20th) I examined the breeder and research plots located around Stillwater. I found active leaf rust pustules on lower leaves in early-planted Jagalene in the variety demonstration plot. No powdery mildew or other foliar diseases were observed.
"My soilborne/spindle streak nursery is beginning to show strong symptoms. As the flush of growth comes over the next couple of weeks the difference between resistant and susceptible lines will become obvious. I also saw quite a few lady beetles on the move, but didn't see any aphids."

Dr. Hunger also has some reports from other parts of Oklahoma- and one from southeast Kansas to boot- we have those detailed on our website at the link below.

Click here for the early season wheat disease update- courtesy of Dr. Bob Hunger of OSU

This Week- OACD and Commodity Classic and Jim Robb
Several things are on the calendar for this week- including the 71st Annual State Meeting of the Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts, cosponsored by the Oklahoma Conservation Commission, now underway today and tomorrow at the Reed Conference Center in Midwest City. One of their featured speakers this morning will be Jari Askins, Oklahoma's Lt. Governor.

Later this week will be the 2009 Commodity Classic at the Gaylord Resort Center in Grapevine, Texas- this is the joint meeting of the soybean, corn, grain sorghum and wheat industries. We will actually be down there twice covering events for you- our friends at Bayer Crop Science have a special Ag Industry Forum that we will be attending Tuesday and Wednesday- then we will be covering parts of the Commodity Classic itself later in the week.

In central Oklahoma- there is going to be a dandy of a cattle market outlook meeting this coming Thursday evening in El Reno as Canadian County will be hosting a market outlook dinner featuring comments from both Dr. Derrell Peel of OSU as well as Dr. Jim Robb of the Livestock Marketing Information Center out of Denver.
There are also District Meetings for the Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association- two this week in the southwest and north central parts of the state.

All of these meetings are listed on our calendar for this week- and there are other events as well to check out- so go to the our calendar link below and look at these events listed for these last days of February- plenty to get involved in around the world of agriculture. AND- remember to send us your calendar items as well- just drop me an email and we will get them included. It will help if you will put in the front of the subject line Calendar to make sure I see what you send me. (And thanks- we appreciate your input to help make our ag calendar the best on the web for Oklahoma rural interests.)

Click here for the Calendar page found at WWW.OklahomaFarmReport.Com

NCBA Applaudes Vilsack on Allowing COOL Rule to Go Final
Our Monday Beef Buzz is with Washington Lobbyist for the National Cattlemen's Beef Association, Colin Woodall, and his take on the COOL developments over the last half of this past week. Woodall praises the Secretary for moving to allow the rules and regs to become "finalized" come March 16- but does not agree with the Secretary that the intent of the groups that worked under the direction of House Ag Committee Chairman Collin Peterson to come up with the COOL compromise almost two years ago now is not reflected in the Bush language.

We heard last week early that Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack was planning on allowing the COOL regs as published by the Bush Administration in mid January to become final mid March as scheduled- but that the Secretary had a problem with several aspects of the rules- and planned on trying to talk the industry into agreeing to go well past the basic level of compliance that needs to be met with the COOL rules and regs- and apparently well beyond what the packers had told Secretary of Agriculture Ed Schafer that they would do in regards to the multiple countries that could be listed on a package of fresh whole muscle cuts of meat at the retail case.

We delve into all of this from the NCBA perspective on our Monday Beef Buzz- the audio that is linked on our website a little more extensive than the radio version heard on the Radio Oklahoma Network. Click on the link below for our report with Colin Woodall of the Washington office of the NCBA.

Click here for our Beef Buzz on the NCBA take on the COOL developments of this past week

Cattle on Feed Very Uneventful
The February Cattle on Feed Numbers were mostly a non event on Friday afternoon as the numbers released were very much in line with what the trade was anticipating.

Here is a recap of some of the highlights from the Cattle on Feed Numbers:
Cattle on Feed As of Feb 1- 94.0% of a year ago (lowest Feb 1 on feed supply since 1994)
Placements 104% (the middle of the expectations by traders in their pre report guesses)
Marketings 94% (slightly above pre report guesses)

We have comments with Tom Leffler from Leffler Commodities on the report- and the reality that the fundamentals are not driving the market at this time- it's the fear int he economy and the falling stock market that has the cattle market's attention- with falling prices the result. Click ont he link below for Ed and Tom on the Friday report.

Click here for more on this past Friday's Cattle on Feed Report with Ed Richards and Tom Leffler

Glover Cattle Company Getting Ready For Annual Production Sale
The Annual Bull Sale for the Glover Cattle Company is coming up in just about a week- next Wednesday, March 4, 2009 at the ranch in Elgin, Oklahoma. They will be offering ninety eight 18 month old Angus Bulls with performance and ultrasound data.

Ronnie and Tyler Glover have put together a set of Angus cattle from some of the most popular sires in the breed today. Ronnie writes in the sales catalog that this offering measures up when it comes to "moderate birth weights, excellent growth and superior carcass value." He adds that these bulls will "complete your females in the best way."

We have the link below for the National Cattle website- where you can download the sales catalog- or you can call 580-492-4612 and visit with the Glover family about the bulls that will be offered next week.

Click here for the Sales Catalog for the Glover Cattle Company sale on March 4 in Elgin.

Our thanks to Midwest Farm Shows, Producers Cooperative Oil Mill and Johnston Enterprises 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 Livestock Market resembled the auction markets that preceeded it earlier last week- as we had heavy numbers and tumbling prices on the Friday auction. The run totaled 8,742 with Yearling cattle dropping five to seven dollars per hundred and calves off from a week ago by $3 to $5. The Five to six hundred pound steer calves sold from $105 to $111 while the seven to eight hundred pounders cleared from $85 to $90.50. For the complete Woodward Livestock report- click here- the February 20th report should be available after about 8:00 AM on Monday.

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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