Talks are starting among cattle and meatpacker groups over possible changes to the beef checkoff. The American Farm Bureau Federation hosted a meeting last Tuesday in Washington for several groups to explain their individual policies and review recommendations laid out in January to the U.
The U.S. beef industry could lose $13.2 billion a year in market access overseas if a more robust livestock tracking system is not adopted, a study released by the Agriculture Department said last Wednesday. The report, written by university researchers, said the international market expects exporters to have animal identification and tracing systems.
Senatorial holds placed on the nomination of Gary Gensler to chair the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) are increasing Wall Streets power to stop efforts to boost regulation of credit default swaps and other derivatives, House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson, D-MN, said last Tuesday.
USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack sat down last Wednesday to listen to opinions from livestock and meat industry representatives on what direction they believe the government should take in improving its animal identification and tracking program.
South Korea has reclaimed its position as the No. 3 market for U.S. beef after lifting a five-year ban put in place following the first case of mad cow disease in the U.S. in 2003. Industry sources expect sales to South Korea to continue rising in coming months amid some stability in the currency markets and as the cookout season begins.
Barring any unforeseen weather factors, the coming growing season should be favorable for alfalfa, according to Dr. Bruce Anderson, professor of agronomy at the University of Nebraska- Lincoln. Conditions are good for a pretty favorable growing season so far, Anderson said.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said last Wednesday that it will allow a 60-day delay on implementing more stringent feed ban regulations for livestock feed ingredients. The regulations, meant to help prevent any potential spread of bovine spongiform encephalopathy.
Legislation aimed at stopping the slaughter of wildlife that are munching on crops has passed the state Senate and now goes to the House. Under the bill, ranchers and farmers could no longer kill wildlife on private land unless the animals were predators threatening people, pets or livestock.
While strong 2008 incomes and years of conservative borrowing have kept U.S. farmers in a relatively good credit situation heading into planting season, the long-term outlook is less positive, analysts said.