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American Angus Association to introduce PathfinderPlus

The American Angus Association will soon introduce a voluntary, inventory-based reporting system designed to capture additional reproductive trait data and to ultimately expand reproductive and lifetime productivity tools, such as longevity measures.

The new program, known as PathfinderPlus, will debut in early 2012 and provide Angus breeders and their customers with additional information to make effective selection decisions.

“The PathfinderPlus program is a unique system that will allow us to more effectively capture reproductive trait data while providing participants with additional information at weaning processing time, such as calving ease, birth weight and weaning weight EPDs for calves out of inventoried cows,” says Bill Bowman, Association chief operating officer (COO) and director of performance programs.

Breeders interested in participating in PathfinderPlus can enroll in the program through AAA Login, available at www.angus.org, beginning early 2012.

To begin, breeders provide an online inventory of breeding heifers and cows in their herd.… Continue reading

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USDA hog report

Ohio hog producers had 2,130,000 hogs on hand December 1, 2011, which was up 4% from a year earlier, and up slightly from last quarter. The number of market hogs, at 1,960,000 head, was up 5% from last year and up 1% from last quarter. Breeding stock, at 170,000 head, was the same as last year and last quarter.
The September-November pig crop numbered 892,000 head, which was up 5% from last year and up 4% from last quarter. The number of sows farrowed during the September-November 2011 quarter, at 91,000, was 2,000 head above last quarter and 1,000 head above last year. Pigs saved per litter during the September-November 2011 quarter averaged 9.8 and was up 4 percent from the same period last year and up 2 percent from last quarter.
Ohio producers intend to farrow 88,000 sows during the December-February 2012 quarter; down 1% from a year earlier. Farrowing intentions for the spring quarter, March-May 2012, is 89,000; down 2 percent from the same quarter of 2011.… Continue reading

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Proper mineral management key to keeping cattle healthy

Beef producers shouldn’t overlook proper mineral intake as part of an overall feeding plan, according to a Purdue Extension specialist. Ron Lemenager, a professor of animal sciences, said minerals are becoming a more important issue as feed options have changed.

“I think we pretty much had minerals taken care of when everyone was feeding corn and hay,” Lemenager said. “But then it changed and we introduced by-products like distillers dried grains, corn gluten feed and soybean hulls, which changes our supplementation strategy.”

If minerals such as copper, zinc, manganese and selenium are out of balance, a cow could have problems with immune function, reproduction, digestion and metabolism, and onset of puberty, among other issues.

“Minerals are involved with pretty much every metabolic process in the body. Animals do not perform without them,” Lemenager said. “If you don’t properly provide them, it can cause problems.”

Lemenager said the right combinations of forage, feed and supplements can minimize the amount of minerals necessary in some cases.… Continue reading

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Ohio Cattlemen’s Association sets annual meeting and banquet date

The Ohio Cattlemen’s Association’s (OCA) Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet are set for Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012, at the Marriott Columbus Northwest in Columbus. All OCA members are encouraged to attend the day’s events which include policy development sessions, an update on OCA events and programs and OCA’s annual awards banquet.

OCA’s annual meeting will begin at 1 p.m. and will feature Colin Woodall, Vice President of Government Affairs for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. Various OCA committee chairmen will report to the membership, and the association’s policy development session will happen at this meeting.

Following a hospitality hour at 5 p.m., the OCA Awards Banquet will start at 6 p.m. This event will recognize the best and brightest of Ohio’s beef industry and is sponsored by DeKalb and Asgrow. Awards include: Outstanding County Affiliates, Young Cattleman of the Year, Industry Service Award, Industry Excellence Award, Seedstock Producer of the Year, Commercial Producer of the Year and scholarship presentations.… Continue reading

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Make mine an orange Julius!

By Doc Sanders

For several years some dairymen have been feeding their dairy cows citrus pulp and peel, the remains of squeezed oranges. In most cases, the pulp and peel are pelleted to make it easy to handle, transport and incorporate into cows’ total mix ration (TMR). This is just one more example of cows’ unique ability — as I’ve covered before in my columns and TV commentaries — to put to productive use food byproducts and waste that otherwise would be discarded. 

Orange peel and pulp provide high energy to fuel fermentation in the cow’s rumen. Plus, it offers an economic bonus for the dairy farmer: It partially substitutes expensive nutritional components such as corn and dietary fat.

Another advantage of adding orange peel and pulp to the TMR: Cows love it. They go after it like children eating chocolate chip or M&M cookies.

So, orange pulp and peel help make certain cows take full advantage of the nutrition carefully formulated by a nutritionist in the TMR.… Continue reading

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Improvest research shows benefits for hog production

By Kyle Sharp

Ohio State University animal scientist Dustin Boler has been working on research on Improvest, a new injectable product developed by Pfizer Animal Health that offers an alternative to physical castration in male pigs.

“This product definitely has some advantages in production and carcass cutability, so if it is priced reasonably there are some advantages to its use,” said Boler, who has done meat quality research on the product.

The conclusions were that Improvest did not affect eating quality of fresh meat, has minimal affect on pork quality parameters, increases carcass cutability and does not affect the characteristics of further processed pork products. However, the bellies of treated pigs are thinner and softer, which provides some challenges to bacon processors, and treated hogs are slightly leaner, which means a slight reduction in marbling, Boler said.

Improvest is a protein compound that suppresses testicular function in male hogs and controls the impact of “boar taint” on pork quality when used on intact male hogs.… Continue reading

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Study confirms beef's role in healthy diet

In a first of its kind study, researchers at The Pennsylvania State University demonstrated that eating beef everyday as part of a heart-healthy diet can improve cholesterol  levels. Texas medical doctor and cattleman Richard Thorpe said the Beef in an Optimal Lean Diet (BOLD) study proves what he has known for years – lean beef not only tastes great but it also plays an important role in a heart-healthy diet.

“As a father, medical doctor and beef producer, I have proudly and confidently served my family beef and have recommended it to my patients for years,” Thorpe said on behalf of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA). “The BOLD study is further proof that Americans should feel good knowing the beef they enjoy eating and serving their loved ones is not only a nutrient-rich, satisfying food that provides 10 essential nutrients in about 150 calories but is good for their heart health as well.”

The BOLD study, which was funded by the Beef Checkoff, will appear in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in January.… Continue reading

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Study confirms beef’s role in healthy diet

In a first of its kind study, researchers at The Pennsylvania State University demonstrated that eating beef everyday as part of a heart-healthy diet can improve cholesterol  levels. Texas medical doctor and cattleman Richard Thorpe said the Beef in an Optimal Lean Diet (BOLD) study proves what he has known for years – lean beef not only tastes great but it also plays an important role in a heart-healthy diet.

“As a father, medical doctor and beef producer, I have proudly and confidently served my family beef and have recommended it to my patients for years,” Thorpe said on behalf of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA). “The BOLD study is further proof that Americans should feel good knowing the beef they enjoy eating and serving their loved ones is not only a nutrient-rich, satisfying food that provides 10 essential nutrients in about 150 calories but is good for their heart health as well.”

The BOLD study, which was funded by the Beef Checkoff, will appear in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in January.… Continue reading

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Ohio pork producers hear industry updates at annual meeting

By Kyle Sharp

About 60 Ohio pork producers heard about a new product that could offer some benefits on their farms during the Ohio Pork Producers Council (OPPC) Annual Meeting, held Dec. 13 at the Der Dutchman Restaurant in Plain City.

The evening meeting included a presentation by National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) CEO Neil Dierks.

“He gave an update on many of the exciting things NPPC has done over the past year, including trade agreements, fighting unreasonable regulations and other things going on in Washington,” said Dick Isler, OPPC executive vice president.

Isler also reviewed the many OPPC activities of the past year and recognized new and retiring members of the OPPC Board of Directors. Retiring from the Board after completing four-year terms were Duane Stateler, McComb; Jean Bell, Zanesville; and Dave Grauer, Shiloh. Joining the Board are Kyle Brown, Marion; Connie Surber, Sabina; and Rich Deaton, New Madison.

OPPC activities highlighted included presentations on pork and pork production in 217 high school family and consumer sciences classes reaching nearly 4,700 students just since September, and more than 8,900 students reached last school year; pork-related educational kits sent to 620 second-grade teachers, reaching 15,500 students; participation at the Preble County Pork Festival, with 150,000 people attending; more than 238,000 views of OPPC-produced videos on YouTube; three new videos/television ads produced featuring Ohio pork producers; a consumer e-news e-mail regularly sent to 10,500 subscribers; 30,000 pounds of ground pork donated in 1-pound packages to Ohio food banks during October Pork Month; and two annual trips to Washington, D.C., to meet with legislators about issues important to the pork industry.… Continue reading

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Beef short course

This short course is a joint effort of Ohio State University Extension, Michigan State University, and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture to enhance the cattle industry in the Eastern Corn Belt.

The industry is implementing programs to maintain consumer confidence in the product produced in our facilities. One of these programs is audits conducted by third party entities on animal care and environmental compliance. The first session will focus on feed additives, manure management and maximizing use of the corn crop. The second session will include cattle economics, cattle marketing alternatives and electronic carcass grading.

Both Ohio sessions will be held at the Wood County Junior Fair Building in Bowling Green. Registration and refreshments will be provided beginning at 6 pm each evening.

Participants may enroll by sending a check made payable (US Funds) to Michigan State University ($35 for 1st person and $25 for each additional family/farm member; FFA/4-H students can register for $15 each) and mailed to Faye Watson, Dept.… Continue reading

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USDA revises national nutrient management standard

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has revised its national conservation practice standard on nutrient management to help producers better manage the application of nutrients on agricultural land. Proper application of nitrogen and phosphorus offers tremendous benefits to producers and the public, including cost savings to the producer and the protection or improvement of ground and surface water, air quality, soil quality and agricultural sustainability.

“Protecting America’s supply of clean and abundant water is an important objective for USDA,” Vilsack said. “This precious resource is the foundation for healthy ecosystems and sustainable agricultural production. USDA provides voluntary technical and financial assistance to help producers manage their nutrients to ensure a clean and abundant water supply while maintaining viable farm and ranch operations.”

The nutrient management conservation practice is an important tool in the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) conservation toolbox. The agency’s staff uses this conservation practice to help farmers and ranchers apply their nutrients more efficiently.… Continue reading

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Memorial gifts received by Jersey Youth Academy

The Jersey Youth Academy was created in 2008 by the Board of Directors of the American Jersey Cattle Association to attract, educate and retain talented young people for careers in the Jersey dairy business. The program is conducted every two years, with all program costs paid by the Academy fund.

Calvin and Lorraine Covington, Clemmons, N.C., made a contribution in memory of Norma “Duffy” Lyon, Toledo, Iowa. Known the world over as “the Butter Cow Lady,” Duffy was named an AJCA Honorary Member in 2007 and was World Dairy Expo’s Dairywoman of the Year in 1990.

Memorial gifts were also received honoring Neal F. Schirm, Canal Winchester, Ohio. A lifelong Jersey breeder, Schirm served as Director of the American Jersey Cattle Club and received the AJCA Distinguished Service Award in 2004. He was one of the founders and original delegates to the Central Ohio Breeders Association. Making contributions were J. Lawrence and Barbara C.… Continue reading

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Support Angus youth with holiday gift buying

Get the holidays cooking with Gifts that Sizzle gift boxes by The American Angus Auxiliary and Certified Angus Beef (CAB). The special people on your shopping list will be pleased with CAB, filet mignon, strip steaks, rib eye steaks or a combination steak package.

Plus, with every purchase, Certified Angus Beef LLC (CAB) will donate a percentage of the profit toward the American Angus Auxiliary educational outreach and scholarship programs for Angus youth.

“This is a win-win for all of us, from an educational standpoint, enhancing scholarship and educational programs while promoting a high-quality product,” says Jane Ebert, who helped create the Gifts that Sizzle program from Sparta, N.C.

Throughout the past five years, the Auxiliary has partnered with several companies when hosting holiday fundraisers. This year, the group is proud to partner solely with CAB to offer customers the best product available.

“Whether it is a holiday gift or customer appreciation, this is a great example of people who know they are giving a superior gift while helping youth.”

To purchase a Gifts that Sizzle gift box, visit www.angusauxiliary.com orwww.certifiedangusbeef.com.… Continue reading

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USDA implements provisions from GIPSA

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced USDA has published the Final Rule implementing the 2008 Farm Bill provisions under the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA).

“As I travel throughout the countryside, I often hear from farmers and ranchers about their concerns with the marketplace becoming more concentrated,” Secretary Vilsack said. “While concentration certainly comes with some efficiencies, Congress recognized in the 2008 Farm Bill that additional protections for producers are warranted. Today’s rule will implement these targeted protections and help provide more fairness and transparency in the marketplace.”

The provisions being finalized by the Department today were required by the 2008 Farm Bill and have been modified from the June 22, 2010 proposed rule. These sections include criteria the Secretary may consider when determining whether a live poultry dealer has provided reasonable notice to poultry growers of any suspension of the delivery of birds, when determining whether a requirement of additional capital investments over the life of a poultry growing arrangement or swine production contract constitutes a violation of the Packers and Stockyards Act and when determining if a packer, swine contractor, or live poultry dealer has provided a reasonable period of time for a grower to remedy a breach of contract that could lead to termination of a production contract.… Continue reading

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Ohio beef schools look at "new normal"

By Stan Smith, Fairfield County Extension

 

“It’s a great time to be in agriculture.”

“We have more people to feed and a growing global economy. I don’t know of a better industry to be involved with than agriculture because the underlying fundamentals are strong.”

“If you’re in the cow-calf business you’ve got what everybody else wants. Prices will continue to move higher next year.”

Those words came from Randy Blach, president of Cattle-Fax, at the recent Kansas Livestock Association annual convention. More specifically he said 2012 and 2013 should provide excellent profit opportunities because declining inventories of stocker and feeder cattle will continue to support prices and keep cow-calf producers in the driver’s seat. In fact, Cattle-Fax projects average national prices for 550-pound calves to average $1.75 per hundredweight next year, and 750 to 800-pound yearlings to average $1.50 per hundredweight.

From a feeder’s perspective, consider Blach’s thoughts on marketing high quality fed cattle.… Continue reading

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Ohio beef schools look at “new normal”

By Stan Smith, Fairfield County Extension

 

“It’s a great time to be in agriculture.”

“We have more people to feed and a growing global economy. I don’t know of a better industry to be involved with than agriculture because the underlying fundamentals are strong.”

“If you’re in the cow-calf business you’ve got what everybody else wants. Prices will continue to move higher next year.”

Those words came from Randy Blach, president of Cattle-Fax, at the recent Kansas Livestock Association annual convention. More specifically he said 2012 and 2013 should provide excellent profit opportunities because declining inventories of stocker and feeder cattle will continue to support prices and keep cow-calf producers in the driver’s seat. In fact, Cattle-Fax projects average national prices for 550-pound calves to average $1.75 per hundredweight next year, and 750 to 800-pound yearlings to average $1.50 per hundredweight.

From a feeder’s perspective, consider Blach’s thoughts on marketing high quality fed cattle.… Continue reading

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FDA approves new BRD therapy

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Pulmotil, an innovative Bovine Respiratory Disease (BRD) treatment for groups of cattle in the early stages of a BRD outbreak that provides 14 days of sustained in-feed therapy, a practice that reduces stress associated with cattle handling.

Pulmotil is approved for the control of BRD associated with Mannheimia haemolytica, Pasteurella multocida and Histophilus somni in groups of beef and non-lactating dairy cattle, where active BRD has been diagnosed in at least 10 percent of the animals in the group.

“This approval brings cattle veterinarians and producers a truly new management tool for controlling BRD,” said Jeff Simmons, president, Elanco. “With the introduction of Pulmotil, Elanco continues to bring the beef and dairy industries highly effective treatment solutions that provide more BRD management flexibility.”

BRD is the most common disease among feedlot cattle, accounting for approximately 75% of feedlot morbidity and 50 percent to 70% of feedlot deaths,costing the industry an estimated $800 to $900 million annually in economic losses due to reduced feed efficiency, treatment costs and deaths.… Continue reading

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Select Sires completes Calf Campus

Select Sires Inc. has completed the new Calf Campus facility located near Plain City, Ohio. During the summer of 2011, construction began to develop two state-of-the-art facilities that will foster bull calf health and growth at Select Sires. The bio-secure campus will be home to nearly 150 calves when it is fully occupied. 
 


The new calf facilities will promote vigor and fitness among the bull calves, enhancing the productivity of the bulls at a younger age for semen collection and enabling Select Sires’ customer-owners to have further success for many generations within their herd. Being mindful to environmental concerns, the facilities were created to self-contain all animal waste and water discharge, including a manure storage facility.
 


“This continued research, growth, development and investment from Select Sires demonstrates our commitment to creating a high-quality product for our customer-owners,” said David Thorbahn, president and chief executive officer of Select Sires. “With our latest expansion, Select Sires is anticipating earlier semen release on our most exclusive Program for Genetic Advancement bulls.… Continue reading

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