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Demand more when buying a herd sire

Bull buying season is well underway throughout the cow-calf regions across the country. If your calving season starts in January, you may have already made your herd sire selections for this year’s breeding season. If your calving season starts a bit later, you may be in the midst of making herd sire selections. If you have yet to make your bull buying decisions, there are plenty of opportunities available in the immediate future through public auction or private treaty.

As an Extension professional and a seedstock producer, one of the most interesting discussions I can have with a producer is reviewing their thoughts on what they are looking for in a potential purchase for a herd sire. Obviously, there is a wide range of criteria to be considered depending on the production goals and size of the herd. In my experience, a few very consistent themes emerge with discussions on a potential herd bull purchase: calving ease, disposition, and price.… Continue reading

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Manure and the law

Farmers who apply fertilizer to their fields, particularly manure, need to be aware that if the fertilizer winds up in a waterway, they could be facing fines as farmers in northwestern Ohio did last summer.

Applying manure can be particularly tricky because it’s often in liquid form and typically applied to the surface of fields, unlike most commercial fertilizers. So, if manure is spread and not fully incorporated into the soil before a heavy rainfall, the manure could run off a farm field and into a nearby body of water.

In August 2017, three fish kills occurred in separate incidents in Williams, Allen and Hardin counties. Farmers had treated their fields with manure, then a major rainstorm came through.

Given the risks associated with spreading manure, it’s important for farmers to have written plans specifying how often, when and where they’re going to place manure or commercial fertilizer and to keep records on each spreading, said Peggy Hall, agricultural and resource law field specialist for Ohio State University Extension.… Continue reading

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Custom meat processors and meat markets offer diversity and distinction

Ohio is home to a wide array of custom meat processors and meat markets offering vast processing options and opportunities to keep the state’s livestock industry going. Here are highlights from four meat processors showcasing some of the rich diversity of options available to Ohio livestock producers and consumers.

 

Cotterman Brothers Processing, Glenford

Tucked in the Appalachian foothills of Perry County, Cotterman Brothers Processing is a custom-exempt plant specializing in beef, hog, and lamb. The plant produces quality cuts of meat and delivers timely service at a reasonable price. They custom cut and package, offer smoking and curing for hogs, and have a delicious meatball/burger seasoning mix for ground lamb. Hog roaster rental is another important and unique aspect of this enterprise.

Ted Cotterman has owned the business since 1986.

“At that time, we had a mobile truck and butchered on site at the farm, then we would take the animals back to the Glenford facility to cut up,” Cotterman said, “Ten years later, in ’96, we got a kill floor on the property.”

While owning a small business is a time-consuming, 24/7 job, Cotterman, a farmer who raises club lambs and is co-owner of Genetic Force Show Pigs with Tom Spohn, says the processing business offers him some work flexibility.… Continue reading

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Surber family farms with excellence, then shares it with others

In the social media world of today, those in agriculture are finding that not only is it important to do a great job producing high quality food in an environmentally responsible manner, they also have to tell everyone about it.

Few have done more in terms of both production and promotion of Ohio’s hog industry than John and Connie Surber of Clinton County, the 2018 Ohio Pork Industry Excellence Award recipients. Both grew up in Highland County with farm roots. John went to college expecting to come back and work on the family farm, but instead got an off-farm job in 1975 with Premier Feeds.

“I got hired as a feed salesman at Premier and started selling feed for livestock in the area. I moved up in the company until the 1990s and became president of the company and then we purchased the company in 1999,” John said. “When I started in 1975, Clinton County was the top hog county in the state, but in the 70s and 80s Airborne and then DHL came into Clinton County and farmers started selling their livestock and working for DHL.… Continue reading

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Forage news, frostbite, and fescue foot

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to attend the American Forage and Grassland Council Annual Conference with some of our other Ohio Extension Educators. It was a wonderful experience to learn from others and share what we have learned with forage producers and professionals across the country.

Two sessions that I sat in on for the benefit of my local producers were “Managing Clovers in the 21stCentury” and “Understanding and Mitigating Fescue Toxicosis.”

The clover session included a presentation by Dow Agrosciences about treating broadleaf weeds in clover stands and progress they have made toward an herbicide that works as well as their leading pasture herbicide, without killing white clover. It will still be a couple years before the product is released for use, but it is coming.

In the fescue toxicosis session, we were reminded to watch for fescue foot in winter. The decreased circulation that results from the constricted blood vessels in the animal makes them increasingly susceptible to frostbite.… Continue reading

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Beef 510 Program to be held in March

Beef 510 is a one-day program designed for those who have participated in Beef 509, but is open to all cattlemen. The program will continue the traditional beef sensory sessions and BQA presentations, but will also present information designed to help producers better prepare their operations and their cattle to meet challenges of the future. All who attend will be certified in Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) at the end of the course. Beef 510 is a joint program coordinated by the Ohio Beef Council, the Department of Animal Sciences — OSU, and OSU Extension. The speakers are as follows:

Justin Nelson, Director of Animal Procurement specializing in cattle for Tyson Foods, Inc. and located at the corporate office in Dakota Dunes, South Dakota. He will discuss today’s marketing environment and Tyson’s approach to market access programs. The presentation will also discuss the decision from Wendy’s restaurants to purchase cattle beginning in 2019 only from those suppliers who can verify the producers providing the cattle are beef quality assurance certified.… Continue reading

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China not a factor in U.S. beef exports . . . yet

The latest beef trade data for November shows continued improvement in beef exports. November beef exports were 260.7 million pounds, up 2.7% over exports in November, 2016. Beef exports have increased year over year each month in 2017 for the first 11 months of the year. For the year-to-date, beef exports are up 13% over one year ago.

Beef exports to the five major destinations are each up for the year-to-date. Exports to Japan are up 27.6% year over year. Japan is the largest U.S. beef export market and accounts for 29.5% of total exports for the year-to-date. Second largest is South Korea, up 6.1% through November and representing 16.6% of total exports. Mexico is the third largest beef export market, up 7.5% for the year-to-date and accounting for 14.7% of beef exports. An 11.1% year-over-year increase in beef exports to Hong Kong makes it the fourth largest export market, slightly larger than No.… Continue reading

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Copper hydroxychloride in diets fed to weanling pigs improves performance and health

Copper is an essential element in diets for pigs, and it can be provided in a number of different forms. Copper hydroxychloride is less likely to react with other vitamins and minerals in a premix than the more commonly used copper sulfate, but research on its effects when fed to pigs is limited. Results of recent research at the University of Illinois indicate that including copper hydroxychloride in diets fed to weanling pigs improves growth performance and reduces diarrhea.

Hans H. Stein, professor in the Department of Animal Sciences and the Division of Nutritional Sciences at U of I, conducted three experiments, along with Ph. D. student Charmaine Espinosa and Scott Fry and James Usry of Micronutrients USA LLC. The copper hydroxychloride product tested in the experiments was Micronutrients’ IntelliBond C. The team published their findings in a recent issue of the Journal of Animal Science.

In the first experiment, they compared weanling pigs fed diets containing 150 mg/kg copper in the form of copper hydroxychloride with pigs fed control diets containing only enough copper to meet dietary requirements.… Continue reading

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OPC hosts annual Taste of Elegance

Chef Todd McDunn, Lakeview Café, Scotts Miracle Gro Campus, took top honors at the Ohio Pork Council’s Taste of Elegance Chefs Competition and Reception, earning the coveted Chef Par Excellence award.

Chef Aaron Braun, The Meadowlark, was named Superior Chef, while Chef Ryan Berlin was selected Premier Chef. Chef Aaron Braun also earned the People’s Choice award.

This year, each of the three chefs prepared an appetizer, and entrée featuring pork. Judging the event were Chef Michael Deligatta, Chef Par Excellence in the 2017 Taste of Elegance from the Inn at Versailles; Chef Chuck Langstaff, longtime supporter of OPC and known as the “Prince of Pork” and Erin Vasicek, Coordinator of the Columbus Food Bloggers group and blogger at the SpiffyCookie.com.

In keeping with tradition, the evening began with guests receiving white gloves and a bone-in pork chop. After sampling assorted cheeses and appetizers, they were invited to taste samples from each of the chefs’ menu.… Continue reading

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Mastitis: An issue not to be taken lightly in small ruminants

Mastitis in goats and sheep, similar to cows, is defined as inflammation of the mammary gland and can occurs due several factors, which may be infectious or not and may present in clinical or subclinical form. In clinical mastitis, it is possible to observe the signs of inflammation, such as:

  • pain,
  • redness,
  • swelling of the gland,
  • and changes in milk characteristics, which may show lumps, pinkish/reddish coloration or even absence of secretion.
  • Some severe cases could lead to udder necrosis (“blue bag”) and even death.

In subclinical mastitis, the female does not present inflammatory signs, however, due to presence of some microorganisms in the mammary gland milk quality can be decreased.

The inflammatory process of the mammary gland can have several origins including traumas and lesions. It can also be due to infectious agents, such as fungi, viruses, or in majority of cases bacterial agents. They can cause either environmental or contagious mastitis.… Continue reading

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TPP moving forward without the U.S.

Eleven nations have finalized a revised version of the Trans-Pacific Partnership that does not include the United States. Some in agriculture are expressing concerns.

“Withdrawing from TPP was a missed opportunity for the United States to gain greater access to some of the world’s most vibrant and growing markets. As we now enter a pivotal round of NAFTA negotiations, the last thing we need is to take a step backwards in our relationships with Canada and Mexico,” said Kent Bacus, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association’s Director of International Trade and Market Access. “We encourage negotiators in Montreal to continue building on the progress made in previous rounds so the United States can focus on tearing down trade barriers in Asia and around the world.”… Continue reading

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USDA announces proposed rule to modernize swine inspection

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced its continued effort to modernize inspection systems through science-based approaches to food safety. USDA is proposing to amend the federal meat inspection regulations to establish a new voluntary inspection system for market hog slaughter establishments called the New Swine Slaughter Inspection System (NSIS), while also requiring additional pathogen sampling for all swine slaughter establishments.

The proposed rule also allows innovation and flexibility to establishments that are slaughtering market hogs. Market hogs are uniform, healthy, young animals that can be slaughtered and processed in this modernized system more efficiently and effectively with enhanced process control.

For market hog establishments that opt into NSIS, the proposed rule would increase the number of offline USDA inspection tasks, while continuing 100% FSIS carcass-by-carcass inspection. These offline inspection tasks place inspectors in areas of the production process where they can perform critical tasks that have direct impact on food safety.… Continue reading

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CERCLA reporting deadline Jan. 22

As a reminder, EPA issued a notice directing all livestock farms emitting more than 100 pounds of ammonia or hydrogen sulfide in a 24-hour period to report continuous air emissions under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA).

The deadline to report is Monday, January 22, 2018.

For more information on how to report, click here.

Questions? Concerns? Please contact the Ohio Pork Council at (614) 882-5887.… Continue reading

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Ohio Cattlemen’s Association Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet highlights

The Ohio Cattlemen’s Association Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet was held in January in Lewis Center at the Nationwide Hotel and Conference Center. More than 200 attended the event that offered educational breakout sessions, several new youth opportunities, the annual meeting, and evening banquet.

“We got an update from Washington, D.C. We heard about where we stand on the electronic logging devices, which is a big issue for a lot of our members and we talked about water quality issues. We also had our first annual youth quiz bowl and we had 42 individuals participate. We are trying to get some more of the youth involved in what we are doing here,” said Sasha Rittenhouse, the new Ohio Cattlemen’s Association president. “One of the biggest things I am looking forward to as president is giving back to an association that I truly believe benefits every single beef producer in the state.… Continue reading

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Sidedressing manure into corn continues to have promising results

Ohio State University Extension has conducted manure research on growing crops for several years in an effort to make better use of the available nutrients. Incorporating manure into growing corn can boost crop yields, reduce nutrient losses, and give livestock producers or commercial manure applicators another window of time to apply manure to farm fields.

The manure research trial in Table 1 was conducted over six years at the Northwest Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center’s Hoytville station. The swine manure application rate was 5,000 gallons per acre to get 200 units of nitrogen. The dairy manure application rate was 13,577 gallons per acre to get 130 units of nitrogen. The dairy treatments received additional nitrogen as incorporated 28% UAN just prior to the manure application to reach the 200-unit goal. The 28% UAN treatments also received 200 units of nitrogen.

Pre-emergent applications of 28% UAN, swine manure or dairy manure were made within five days of corn planting.… Continue reading

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Ohio Cattlemen’s Association Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet this weekend

It is the time of year when the thoughts of Ohio’s cattlemen turn from frozen pastures and feeding hay to state policy and an annual celebration of success. The Ohio Cattlemen’s Association Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet is this weekend in Lewis Center at the Nationwide Hotel and Conference Center.

“We’re looking forward to our Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet on Saturday. We try to encompass all of the state’s beef industry at the event. It is a day of business through the policy meeting and it is also a celebration of Ohio’s cattlemen through the banquet in the evening,” said Stephanie Sindel, director of member services and youth programs for the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association. “We have some brand new youth programs with a youth quiz bowl in the morning and some quality assurance sessions as well. We have some industry resource speakers for cattlemen coming in including Dr. Alvaro Garcia Guerra with Ohio State talking about pregnancy loss in beef cattle and how to prevent that.… Continue reading

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How can delayed weaning benefit your operation?

At what age do you wean your lambs? This is a question that I have asked producers many times. I have heard ages ranging from 35 to 130 days of age with the most common answer being 60 days of age. This is the most common weaning age for producers in the eastern United States. When I ask producers why they wean their lambs at 60 days of age or younger, most respond with “that’s the way we have always done it here on the farm, so why change now?”

From a researcher’s perspective, this is not a valid answer. Weaning before the natural weaning age (between 100 to180 days of age depending upon sheep breed) is stressful. Weaning stress can lead to decreases in animal performance as demonstrated by decreased weight gain. Weaning stress can also result in decreased animal health as shown by decreases in immune system function that can lead to an increased susceptibility to disease and infection.… Continue reading

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Livestock Predator Workshop

USDA-Wildlife Services, the Scioto County Soil and Water Conservation District, and The Ohio State University Extension will be hosting a Livestock Predator Workshop on February 17, 2018 at The Ohio State University South Centers in Piketon, Ohio. Intended for livestock producers, this will be an all-inclusive workshop where attendees will learn how to use lethal and non-lethal wildlife damage techniques to manage black vultures and coyotes, appropriate laws, the migratory bird depredation permit process (black vultures), as well as various demonstrations.

Registration is limited to the first 100 people with registration details on found this flyer, or contact Scioto SWCD (740-259-9231 x 4) for details.… Continue reading

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USDA rule allows pork imports from Mexico

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently finalized a regulation that will allow all Mexican states to export pork to the United States, a move supported by the National Pork Producers Council.

USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is implementing a science-based risk assessment that determined Mexico is free of Classical Swine Fever (CSF), highly contagious viral disease in pigs. It was eradicated from the United States in the late 1970s. APHIS in 2016 concluded that the risk of CSF from pork imports from Mexico is negligible.

NPPC is a strong supporter of using epidemiological science and risk analyses to determine if trade can be safely conducted between countries. Mexico in late 2007 requested market access to the United States for pork from the eight states in its central region but later amended that request to include all Mexican states. APHIS at that time conducted multiple reviews and determined Mexico’s control program for CSF was not sufficient to classify the country as negligible risk for the disease.… Continue reading

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Input wanted for 2018 Ohio farm custom rate survey

We need your assistance in securing up-to-date information about farm custom work rates and machinery rental rates in Ohio. This information is updated every-other year and published by OSU Extension. It is widely used across the state, so we need the best information available. Enclosed is a copy of the Ohio Farm Custom Rate Survey for 2018. Please provide rates that are current including the latest price increases or planned increases.

An online option for this survey is available at: OhioFarmCustomRatesSurvey2018

or: https://osu.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_cJa90YBYdWOa6DX

We would ask you to please respond even if you know only have a few operations with data. We want information on actual rates, either what you paid to hire work or what you charged to perform custom work.

Deadline for Surveys to be returned: March 31, 2018

Further instructions on select sections:

Silage Harvest (Pg.2, Middle of 1st Column) Please circle what type of storage that is used:

1.Upright, 2.Bunker or 3.Silage Bag.… Continue reading

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