TDA Market Recap, May 18, 2015

Texas Department of Agriculture

For the week ending May 16, 2015, Texas auctions quoted feeder cattle prices mostly steady, with instances of sales ranging from $6 lower to $10 higher per hundredweight (cwt). Texas weekly direct feeder cattle sales were steady to $2 higher. Wholesale beef values were higher, with Choice Grade gaining $3.81 to close at $261.93 per cwt and Select Grade gaining $4.28 to close at $251.10 per cwt. Net export sales for May 1-7 were down 42 percent from the previous week. Export shipments were down one percent from the previous week, and shipments primarily went to Japan, Mexico and South Korea. Read more…

Texas A&M Beef Cattle Short Course

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Aug. 3-5, 2015 | College Station, Texas The Texas A&M Beef Cattle Short Course has a rich tradition and historical place in the programs emanating from the Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M University. The Cattleman’s College features more than 20 concurrent sessions. Topics include animal health, nutrition, reproduction, breeding, genetics, selection, research, marketing and handling. Management sessions will cover business, forage, range, and purebred cattle. Topics such as landowner issues and fence building will be featured at this BCSC. Sessions are designed for everyone, from the newest member of the industry to the most seasoned producer. A number of pesticide CEUs, veterinarian CECs and BQA credits are available to attendees. Click here for a full tentative schedule (PDF) Click Read more…

TSCRA Crime Watch: Charolais cow shot in north Central Texas

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TSCRA Special Ranger John Bradshaw, Dist. 9 in Central Texas, reports the shooting of a cow in a pasture south of Holiday in Archer County some time between May 12 and 13. If you have any information regarding this shooting, please call Special Ranger Bradshaw at 940-889-6123. Anonymous tipsters may also call the Operation Cow Thief hotline at 888-830-2333. A cash reward is offered for information leading to an arrest and/or grand jury indictment. Anonymity is guaranteed.

WTO rules against US COOL requirements

Example label now available on ground products.

The World Trade Organization’s Appellate Body ruled against the U.S. Country of Origin Labeling rule for meats on Monday, upholding the compliance panel’s report. National Cattlemen’s Beef Association President Philip Ellis said the next step is retaliation. Read more…

Cattle herd finally enters expansion phase

Texas AgriLife Extension Service photo by Robert Burns

The Jan. 1 cattle inventory came in at 89.8 million head, up 1.3 million head or 1.4 percent from a year ago. From the 2007 peak to Jan. 1, 2014, the cattle inventory had declined 8 million head to 88.5 million, the lowest total since 1952. The liquidation phase of this cycle was extended at least a couple of years by drought and high feed costs. However, signs of a transition to expansion began to emerge in mid-2013 and extended throughout 2014. As pasture conditions improved and forage supplies increased, producers sharply reduced cow cull rates and began to hold back heifers to place in the cow herd. And that impact was evident in the upturn just revealed, occurring sooner than most analysts expected. Read more…

Cow-Calf Corner: Avian influenza and meat markets; Another look at fall vs. spring calving

Photo courtesy Oklahoma State University

In the May 18 edition of Cow-Calf Corner, a weekly newsletter from the Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Agency, Derrell Peel discusses how the avian influenza outbreak among birds in the U.S. is affecting both poultry and red meat markets, and Glenn Selk takes a second look at fall vs. spring calving. Read more…

TSCRA hosts ranch gatherings in Abilene and Seguin

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TSCRA welcomed members, friends and guests to ranch gatherings in Abilene on May 8 and Seguin on May 15. An event planned for May 13 in Floresville was cancelled due to weather and will be rescheduled. Read more…

TSCRA Hosts Texas Central Railway Informational meeting

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TSCRA welcomed members and local ranchers to an informational meeting Thursday evening in Corsicana on the proposed Texas Central Railway (TCR). Pete Bonds, TSCRA president, welcomed attendees and noted that the meeting was an opportunity to learn more about the project. Read more…

JBS CEO says Brazil close to exporting fresh beef to US

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Brazil is “closer than it had ever been” to exporting fresh beef to the U.S., the chief executive of Brazilian meat packer JBS SA said on Thursday, adding that he expects shipments to start later this year. The Brazilian agriculture ministry expects a formal announcement on meat exports to the U.S. when President Dilma Rousseff visits Washington next month. But even if the accord is concluded it would not be a “transformational event” for Brazil’s beef industry, said JBS chief executive Wesley Batista, who heads the world’s largest meat seller. Read more at Reuters…

Comptroller Hegar offers extension of tax deadline in areas affected by severe weather

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Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced Friday, May 15 that businesses affected by the recent severe weather, tornadoes and floods in certain Texas counties can postpone filing and paying state taxes. The affected counties are Bosque, Clay, Denton, Eastland, Gaines, Montague and Van Zandt. Businesses needing additional time to file or pay can simply call their office to request a 90-day extension. Read more…

Dealing with a flooded well after a storm

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Access to clean, safe water for drinking, cooking and personal hygiene is one of the primary concerns immediately following a flood. For those who rely on private wells for their water supply, this means taking precautions to ensure the well is structurally sound and the water is not contaminated. Bacterial contamination is a pressing concern when it comes to flooded wells. There also could be chemical contaminants in the water. Read more…

10 opportunities ahead for beef producers

photo courtesy Oklahoma State University

Gary Smith asked a group of industry leaders to identify key opportunities for beef over the next decade.  The group represented cow-calf producers, cattle feeders, trade economists, beef packers, meat science and animal health experts. Read more at BEEF magazine…

Bobwhite chicks reported before Oklahoma flooding, hail

Picture © Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

Landowners reported seeing some early broods of bobwhite quail chicks in western Oklahoma during the first week of May, according to biologists with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (ODWC). But recent consecutive days of stormy weather, hail and flash flooding across parts of southern Oklahoma could prove to be a setback for early-season quail reproduction. Read more…

US Drought Monitor and Summary, May 12, 2015

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In Oklahoma and Texas, large-scale 1-2 category improvements were made after copious rains of 6-10 inches or more were recorded. Most areas in Texas and Oklahoma were good out to 24 months, but some residual dryness was still evident at 36 months. D4 has been completely eliminated from Texas and Oklahoma for the first time since July 2012. Read more…

TSCRA Crime Watch: 5 head of cattle missing in Texas Coastal Bend; Saddles, tools stolen in OK

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TSCRA Steve Martin, Dist. 30 along the Texas coast, reports 5 head of cattle missing from a property in Jim Wells County. Missing since March 1 are 4 head of black Brangus cows, all 6 years old and weighing approximately 1,100 pounds, each. All had white ear tags with the ranch name. Also missing is one calf of unknown age or color. If you have any information regarding these cattle, please call Special Ranger Martin at 361-358-8851. TSCRA Special Ranger John Cummings, Dist. 5 in northeast Oklahoma, reports the theft of saddles and a cordless drill from a property near Pryor in Mayes County. Some time between May 8 and 9 a thief or thieves entered an unlocked barn to steal a brown leather barrel Read more…

May 2015 ENSO Forecast: Will this El Niño be an overachiever?

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According to the forecasters at the National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center, there’s a 90 percent chance that the current El Niño will continue through the summer. It is also estimated the chance that it will continue through the end of 2015 at greater than 80 percent. So what’s behind this confident forecast? Read more at Climate.gov…

Experts: recent rains end worst of years-old Texas drought

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Recent heavy rains have helped Texas emerge from the worst of the years-long drought. The U.S. Drought Monitor on Thursday indicated Texas, for the first time since mid-2012, is no longer in the “exceptional drought” category. That’s the most dire of five drought designations on the weekly map by federal agencies. The drought has ravaged parts of Texas since 2011. Sections of the state were still listed Thursday as abnormally dry or in moderate, severe or extreme drought. Read more at the Longview News-Journal…

COOL retaliation and its impact on the US

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The World Trade Organization (WTO) Appellate Body will soon rule on Canada and Mexico’s case against the U.S. on the mandatory Country of Origin Label (COOL) requirement on muscle cuts of beef and pork. This is the fourth and final decision by the WTO, and in the three previous decisions it has ruled against the U.S. COOL law. If the U.S. loses this case, Canada and Mexico have indicated their intention to retaliate on hundreds of U.S. products, ranging from meat and fruit to jewelry, furniture, and biofuels. Pending arbitration, retaliation claimed by Canada and Mexico could be economically devastating. Read more from the House Committee on Agriculture…

It’s what’s for dinner: Crock pot roast

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If rainy weather has you foregoing the outside grill, try this easy, popular crock pot roast.  Read more at food.com…

USDA invests $8.5 million to help conserve water, improve water quality in Ogalalla Aquifer

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Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Thursday, May 14 that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing $6.5 million in the Ogallala Aquifer region this year to help farmers and ranchers conserve billions of gallons of water and improve water quality. Funding will be targeted to seven priority areas to support their primary water source and strengthen rural economies. “This funding assists conservationists and agricultural producers in planning and implementing conservation practices that conserve water and improve water quality,” said Vilsack. “This work not only expands the viability of the Ogallala Aquifer but also helps producers across the Great Plains strengthen their agricultural operations.” Underlying the Great Plains in eight states, the Ogallala supports nearly one-fifth of the wheat, corn, cotton and cattle produced in Read more…