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Friday, September 5,2014

Restaurant Performance Index declines slightly for the second consecutive month

by WLJ
The National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Performance Index (RPI) for July was released at the end of August. The index registered a modest decline in July as a result of a dampened outlook among restaurant operators.

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Friday, August 29,2014

Don't take Checkoff ROI lightly

by WLJ
As a beef producer, I have always believed that the beef checkoff assessment that my family pays each time we sell an animal is a good investment for us, and I’m happy to say that we now have some robust validation of that belief.

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Friday, August 29,2014

Improved silage management

by WLJ
Corn silage is a major ingredient in most confined cattle rations. To ensure good storage and fermentation, Karla Hernandez, South Dakota State University Extension Forages Field Specialist, said that corn for silage should typically be harvested between 60-70 moisture.

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Friday, August 29,2014

Options weighed on replacement heifers amid historic high prices

by WLJ
“One operation we tracked had heifers weaned in 2010 and 2011, what those heifers were and what their accumulated expenses were over the two years to the point where they were heavy bred. Their expenses totaled $1,100-1,400 a head. That ranch was pretty efficient and did a good job of reducing their expenses.

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Friday, August 29,2014

Beef traceback measures combat foodborne illness

by WLJ
The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has added another layer of food safety screening to the U.S. beef supply chain. A recent announcement by the agency stated that new procedures would mean quicker traceback of ground beef contaminated with E.

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Friday, August 29,2014

Low-stress weaning options

by WLJ
Weaning is a stressful time for calves. This stress can contribute to reduced feed consumption, which means poor nutrition. It also can depress the immune system, leading to greater risk for sickness and death, explained Adele Harty, South Dakota State University (SDSU) Extension Cow/Calf Field Specialist.

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Friday, August 29,2014

The drought deepens in the West; LFP eligibility maps updated

by WLJ
California and much of the far West is still swathed in red. In the Golden State, reservoirs are showing their beds and bottled water is being distributed to parched suburban residents. Last week the USDA updated its map of Secretarial Drought Designated counties and.

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Friday, August 29,2014

Smith's letter to EPA's McCarthy

by WLJ
Waterway maps for Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico. These smaller maps were originally a part of the main map used on the front cover but were removed for size concerns and legibility issues. The maps were prepared by INDUS Corporation under contract with the EPA Office of Water, October 2013.

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Friday, August 29,2014

Cow/calf returns record high; start planning now

by WLJ
Since the early 1970s, the Livestock Marketing Information Center (LMIC) has estimated cow/calf returns over cash costs plus pasture rent based on typical production and marketing practices in the Southern Plains, but does not include other economic costs like family labor and management.

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Friday, August 29,2014

Watch hay moisture to minimize storage losses

by WLJ
As Hernandez explained, hay storage losses are around 5 percent when it is harvested at 15 percent moisture and stored under dry conditions. “Stored forages provide essential nutrients for livestock when pastures are inadequate and are a consistent feed supply for dairies, sheep flocks, cow/ calf producers, and beef feedlots.

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