03-10-17 Make plans to attend the 4th Annual Beef Cattle Seminar in Greeley on March 25

4th Annual Beef Cattle Seminar in Greeley on March 25

Weld County Extension and Weld County Livestock Association is presenting a 4th Annual Beef Cattle Seminar on Saturday, March 25, 2017 in the 4-H Building, Island Grove Regional Park, Greeley, CO.  Topics include beef cattle market outlook, opportunities in verification: why we verify, consumer trends in the beef industry, what packer’s want/programs of the beef Industry.  Program begins at 9:00a – 2:30p (Check-in 8:30a-9:00a), a beef quality assurance training will be available at the end of the seminar (2:30-4:30p) if you pre-register. This program targets livestock producers but everyone is welcome, including all 4-H families that would be interested, please make available to all that might be interested.  Hope to see you there!

For registration go to www.weldextension.com , click on Livestock Seminar/ Beef Cattle Seminar/Beef Cattle Seminar Registration form, or call 970-304-6535 for more information.  Registration is due by Wednesday, March 22, 2017.

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Friday, March 10th

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Sponsored by the American Farm Bureau Federation

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Friday, March 10th

EWG Questions About Sonny Perdue

Former Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue is still waiting for a nomination hearing before the Senate as the presumptive Secretary of Agriculture. While he waits, Perdue has come under scrutiny this week from certain groups regarding his time as governor. A New York Times article this week includes complaints about Perdue signing legislation that would save him $100,000 in taxes as well as questions about Perdue getting nearly $300,000 in farm subsidies. Politico’s Morning Agriculture Report says the Times article chronicles some of the 13 complaints filed against Perdue before the Georgia State Board of Ethics. The article does note that Perdue has his defenders. American Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall is a fellow Georgian who says, “I don’t think you’re going to find a man any more ethical than Sonny Perdue. He is as ethical as it comes.” However, the Environmental Working Group raised questions about Perdue this week about farm subsidies and his many business connections. The Group says Perdue received $278,000 between 1996 and 2004 when he was simultaneously running three businesses and serving as a state senator. They say there is “scant evidence he was actively engaged in farming, which is a requirement for receiving subsidies.”

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Put COOL Into NAFTA Negotiations

An open markets advocate told the National Farmers Union’s political action committee that Donald Trump should make it a goal to re-establish country-of-origin labeling for beef and pork during the upcoming NAFTA negotiations. “Trump is going to renegotiate NAFTA. This is an opportunity to put COOL back into law,” says Barry Lynn, a Senior Fellow at New America, a Washington think tank. He also wants the president to “do a deal with Canada and Mexico to make sure they don’t challenge our rights before the World Trade Organization again.” He was referring to the case brought before the WTO by Canada and Mexico challenging the U.S. labeling law. The panel ruled against COOL, saying it discriminated against Canada and Mexico. Lynn says Congress and the Obama Administration “caved” by giving into the ruling. The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative defended the move for several years, but Lynn says if the U.S. had to pay damages to keep the program, they should have done so. The National Farmers Union was a strong supporter of COOL while it was in effect, but they’ve not taken a position on how to get the program going again.

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Kansas Governor Brownback May Be An Ambassador

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback is in talks with the Trump Administration about a potential ambassador position. Sources close to the governor say no offer has been extended yet. A Kansas City Dot Com article says Brownback is talking with the administration about taking the position of U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations for Food and Agriculture. Brownback is a close friend of Vice President Mike Pence and would need to move from the Midwest all the way to Rome if he does take the position. Kansas Public Radio called it a done deal, citing a source close to the situation. Another source close to the governor says the report is premature but does call Brownback a great fit for the position. He served as the Kansas Secretary of Agriculture and spent 14 years with the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee. The ambassador is the liaison for the U.S. government to three different organizations that combat world hunger. They include the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization, the World Food Program, and the International Fund for Agricultural Development.

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U.S. Red Meat Exports Strong in January

U.S. beef and pork exports maintained their momentum that began in the fourth quarter of 2016 with higher year-over-year numbers in January. Those numbers come from USDA statistics and were compiled by the U.S. Meat Export Federation. Beef exports totaled almost 96,500 metric tons, 17 percent more than a year ago. Beef exports were valued at over $515 million, 18 percent higher and the largest number ever in January. Pork exports in January were up 21 percent in volume compared to last year and took a 26 percent jump higher in value at just over $508 million. “The red meat industry entered 2017 with an optimistic outlook,” says Phillip Seng, USMEF Chair and CEO, “and we’re confident we can sustain that strong momentum in the international markets.” He adds there are still challenges ahead thanks to record large production numbers trending higher. “It’s more important than ever that we move more product out of the country by growing U.S. market share,” Seng adds. Beef exports are growing in Asian markets, especially Japan and South Korea. Mexico remains the top export destination for U.S. pork.

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March WASDE Report Released This Week

The U.S. Department of Agriculture released its March World Ag Supply and Demand Estimates report. This month’s 2016/2017 U.S. corn outlook is for increased corn used to produce ethanol and reduced feed and seed use, leaving ending stocks unchanged from last month. Global coarse grain production is expected to rise 12.7 million tons from last month. U.S. soybean supply and use changes for 2016/2017 include higher crush, lower exports, and increased ending stocks compared with last month’s report. Global oilseed estimates include higher production, exports, and global ending stocks compared with last month. U.S. wheat imports are reduced this month by 10 million bushels to 115 million. Ending stocks are projected lower by the same amount. Global wheat production increased 2.8 million tons, mainly due to larger crops in Argentina and Australia. U.S. cotton forecasts show higher production and exports compared to last month and ending stocks are reduced 300,000 bales. Total U.S. meat production is forecast to increase from last month as higher beef production will offset lower pork and turkey production. Broiler production is unchanged from last month. Milk production will rise as milk cow numbers are expected to increase more rapidly.

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Soybean Association Sets Policy for 2017

The American Soybean Association recently set its policy positions for 2017. The list of priorities established at the Commodity Classic in San Antonio includes a strong farm safety net, increased funding for ag export programs, ambitious global trade negotiations, aggressive support for biodiesel, and robust funding for ag research and conservation programs. The just-beginning debate on the new Farm Bill was the subject of several new resolutions this year. Many of the resolutions focused on improving the risk management programs in Title 1 of the legislation. ASA wants a stronger farm safety net, which is necessary to offset lower commodity prices and the resulting drop in farm incomes. The soybean organization also wants to double funding for the Foreign Market Development Program as well as the Market Access Program. ASA will also support increasing the acreage cap for the Conservation Reserve Program. They also expressed strong support for keeping the Farm Bill together with the nutrition program. Delegates also supported several tax-related resolutions, including the renewal of the biodiesel tax credit and a restructuring of the credit to promote domestic production.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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