~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Tuesday March 30, 2010A service of Johnston Enterprises, P & K Equipment/ P & K Wind Energy and American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company!
-- Oklahoma Wheat Officials and Monsanto Meet- Talk GM Wheat
-- Senators- Including Jim Inhofe- Tell RMA- Don't Compromise Effectiveness of Crop Insurance.
-- Obama Administration Using Stimulus Money to do Computer Upgrade at the Farm Service Agency
-- Vets Buy Big Ad to Tell the World that HB3202 is a Drug Authorization Act
-- With Hotter Temperatures This Week- the Needs Talked About in the Latest Crop Weather Update Are Being Met
-- The Obama Healthcare Plan Has Its Costs- Deere and Company Offer a Specific Number
-- BLC Angus Sale is This Thursday in Tecumseh
-- Let's Check the Markets!
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. We are pleased 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!
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Oklahoma Wheat Officials and Monsanto Meet- Talk GM Wheat
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Officials with the Monsanto Company were at the State Capitol last week on Ag Day and met with leaders from the Oklahoma Wheat Growers Association and the Oklahoma Wheat Commission. The topic was the brave new world of genetically modified wheat, as Monsanto was wanting to gather input from the wheat growers regarding their hopes for GM wheat, as well as to calm any concerns that have taken root since the announcement last summer that Monsanto had purchased Westbred and thus acquired a large amount of wheat germplasm in that acquisition. A lot of that germplasm has been developed by land grant schools, including Oklahoma State University, and there was talk about what intellectual rights the universities can retain, and what Monsanto can claim for their own.
According to Don Schieber, current Chairman of the Oklahoma Wheat Commission and also the Vice Chairman of US Wheat Associates, the discussion was healthy and he suspects that the company will have a lot of these behind closed door meetings with growers in the months ahead as they try to sort through all the questions and issues that have to be dealt with. We have our full conversation with Don Schieber in our story on the web- click on the link below to get to the story to hear our Q&A.
Schieber believes that some of the big issues still to be dealt with include which class of wheat will Monsanto start with in developing a trait or traits for wheat, how will they multiply the seed to get enough supply for the market and how they will price the technology, especially in the southern plains where farmers will often decide the economics don't justify harvesting for grain, so they graze out many fields with stocker cattle.
Click here for more on wheat producers from Oklahoma meeting with Monsanto officials on how GM wheat may unfold.
Senators- Including Jim Inhofe- Tell RMA- Don't Compromise Effectiveness of Crop Insurance.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's Senior Senator, Republican Jim Inhofe and 25 other US Senators have joined with the leadership of the Senate Ag Committee- U.S. Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee Chairman Blanche Lincoln, D-Ark., and Ranking Member Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga. to express appreciation for the Risk Management Agency's (RMA) willingness to reconsider its previous proposals as the Standard Reinsurance Agreement (SRA) renegotiation proceeds.
Despite a modest reduction in the size of the proposed cuts between the first and second drafts, the Senators expressed their continuing concerns with RMA's proposals that may undermine the crop insurance program, reduce the quality of service and availability of the program, and harm rural America through job loss. The Senators also noted concern with RMA's approach of proposing significant cuts to the program prior to the completion of a study of program delivery costs.
We have the full text of the letter sent to the RMA from the 28 Senators regarding the ongoing negotiations with Crop Insurers regarding the Standard Reinsurance Agreement- negotiations where the Obama Administration is trying to cut costs by about seven billion dollars to use for projects they feel are more deserving of the money. Click on the link to read the full letter that was been sent.
Click here for more on the Standard Reinsurance Agreement discussions that continue- and how a large group of Senators are weighing in.
Obama Administration Using Stimulus Money to do Computer Upgrade at the Farm Service Agency
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that USDA has awarded a major contract to improve the delivery of agricultural services and benefits to producers by using modern, secure and reliable technology. The Application Transformation and Modernization (ATM) System Integrator Blanket Purchase Agreement contract was awarded to SRA, International of Fairfax, Va.
Modernizing USDA's business and information technology is part of Vilsack's goal to transform USDA into a premier organization of highly motivated, collaborative and mutually-supportive employees who are committed to creating an inclusive, diverse workplace environment that achieves high standards of performance and exceptional customer service. "USDA is committed to improving service delivery and addressing outdated technology issues to meet the needs of our customers," said Vilsack. "We also must provide our dedicated state and county office employees with the tools, information and training to administer FSA farm programs. This contract award is a major step toward reaching these goals."
The Farm Service Agency will be one of the first agencies within USDA and the Federal Government to use this new software package- it's being paid for from Stimulus Monies approved in the first year of the Obama Administration by Congress. Click on the link below to read more about the implementation that is expected by USDA officials.
Click here for more on the FSA getting new technology to help deliver farm and conservation programs to producers.
Vets Buy Big Ad to Tell the World that HB3202 is a Drug Authorization Act
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Apparently four Veterinarians have "ponied" up the money to change the focus on HB 3202 that is ready for a vote in the Oklahoma Senate. Up to this point, the authors of the measure have kept the focus on the right of horse owners to use equine dentists or teeth floaters to work on the teeth of their horses. These teeth floaters would become legal under the Oklahoma statute and would be licensed by the State Vet Medical Board. The measure would also include other animal husbandry practices.
However, four Vets have bought an ad claiming that "big Money" have fooled lawmakers and that this is a Drug Bill and a Drug Bill only. By the way, those four Veterinarians are Dr. Joe Carter, Dr Jeff Hammond, Dr. Mike Johnston and Dr. Tina Neel.
The bone of contention that these four Vets are screaming "RAPE" over is how Vets will handle dispensing of prescription drugs to horse owners for a teeth floater to use on their horse. The bill's language seems to be pretty clear- it says "If prescription drugs are to be used in nonveterinary equine dental care procedures, the equine owner shall contact a veterinarian licensed by the state. If the veterinarian deems that prescription drugs are necessary, the veterinarian may assemble the prescription drugs and may allow the owner or the owner's agent, who can be a nonveterinary equine dental care provider, to pick up the prescription drugs and deliver them to the equine owner. No prescription drugs shall be prescribed, dispensed, or administered without the establishment of a valid client-patient relationship between the equine owner and the veterinarian. Prescription drugs must be used in accordance with United States Food and Drug Administration regulations." The newspaper ad says that a horse owner can have anyone- including a sex offender- go pick up those drugs for them with zero oversight.
The four Vets who paid for this ad claim that we are talking about
dangerous drugs. In addition, we have been told by a PR firm that has been
hired by the Oklahoma Vet Medical Association that this language is not
what was agreed to by the lobbying firm that represented the Vets on this
issue up til this past Friday- the McSpadden Group. They apparently no
longer work for the Vets. Based on the contents of the Monday ad- there is
a frantic effort to get the Senate to either back off of voting at all- to
accept some amendments which would mean another hearing in the House- or
if a straight vote is held on the current bill as passed by the House- get
Senators to vote no.
With Hotter Temperatures This Week- the Needs Talked About in the Latest Crop Weather Update Are Being Met
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The latest Oklahoma Crop Weather Update says we remain in adequate to surplus on top soil moisture as we ended last week and start this week. The report, issued Monday afternoon, says "Fields remain too wet for ground work and row crop producers are still looking for a break in the wet weather. There were only 3.6 days suitable for field work this week."
For our small grain producers- "Small grain conditions continue to rate mostly in the good to fair range, with 14 percent of wheat and 10 percent of rye rated excellent. Sunshine and warmer temperatures are needed to further development. Nearly half of the wheat was jointing by Sunday, up 11 points from last week but still eight points behind normal. Rye jointing reached 54 percent complete, 24 points behind last year and 13 points behind the five-year average. Oat seedings are nearing completion as 95 percent were planted by week's end, two points ahead of normal."
On the spring planted row crops- the report tells us "Rain and wet fields continue to delay field work in many parts of the State, although some progress was made in a few areas. Corn seedbed preparations have reached 41 percent complete, up ten points from the week prior but 16 points behind the five-year average. Sorghum and soybean seedbed preparations are running well behind normal at 14 percent and 12 percent complete, respectively. Peanut seedbed preparations continue to run ahead of normal at 42 percent complete. Seedbed preparations for cotton reached 30 percent complete, 31 points behind last year and 15 points behind the five-year average."
To review the full report- click here and we will jump you to the Crop Weather Update for Oklahoma.
The Obama Healthcare Plan Has Its Costs- Deere and Company Offer a Specific Number
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~In a very brief news release at the end of this past week- Deere Company reports that the Obama Health Care plan that has been approved by the Democratic Majority in Congress has a significant cost- a cost that will have immediate impact in a negative way on the profits they can earn for shareholders.
The release states "Deere & Company has announced that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act signed into law will adversely impact its expenses for fiscal 2010. As a result of the legislation, the company's expenses are expected to be about $150 million higher on an after-tax basis, primarily in the second quarter. This impact was not included in the 2010 outlook for net income attributable to Deere & Company of approximately $1.3 billion disclosed in the company's first-quarter earnings report on February 17th."
If this becomes a trend- and it likely will- expect most inputs for your farm operation to be more expensive in the not too distant future.
BLC Angus Sale is This Thursday in Tecumseh
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~BLC Angus Ranch will hold their Annual Bull Sale on Thursday, April 1, 2010 in Tecumseh. The sale facility is located 2 miles east of Tecumseh on Highway 9. At the ranch sign, turn south and go 3.8 miles.
BLC Angus will be selling 50 performance tested bulls.
Ranch Manager Walt Emory writes in the sale catalog that they will be "offering 50 big, growthy fall and spring yearling bulls with complete production and ultrasound evaluation data. These bulls have been bred with a strong emphasis on positive carcass traits while maintaining moderate birth weights and rapid growth to produce progeny that will excel in today's value added programs. All bulls have passed a breeding soundness exam and are fully guaranteed."
For more information, contact the ranch at 405-598-3757. You can also contact Matt Sims, the Sale Manager at MCS Auctions in Edmond at 405-840-5461. Click on the link below for our auction listing on www.OklahomaFarmReport.Com where we have a link to the sale catalog electronically.
Click here for the BLC Angus Bull sale on Thursday in Tecumseh.
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Let's Check the Markets!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We've had requests to include Canola prices for your convenience here- and we will be doing so on a regular basis. Current cash price for Canola is $7.55 per bushel, while the 2010 New Crop contracts for Canola are now available are $7.70 per bushel- delivered to local participating elevators that are working with PCOM.
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:
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