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Monday, September 8,2014

Tyson, Hillshire Farms merger goes forward

by Kerry Halladay, Associate Editor
Back in mid-July, Tyson issued an Offer to Purchase Hillshire Farms for $63 per share in cash, with the acquisition totaling $8.5 billion. The offer was extended several times and eventually came under Department of Justice (DOJ) scrutiny for potential antitrust concerns.

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Friday, September 5,2014

Spotted frog listed as threatened in WA, OR, CA

by Kerry Halladay, Associate Editor
The frog was once native to much of the Pacific Northwest, but is now found in restricted areas in northern California, Oregon, and Washington in the U.S. as well as British Colombia in Canada. According to the USFWS’ final rule, it currently occupies 10-24 percent of its historical range.

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Monday, September 1,2014

Live futures rebound, may stabalize briefly

by Kerry Halladay, Associate Editor
“However, I believe we get past Labor Day and further into the month of September and the market will be dealing with increased supplies of competing proteins and heavier carcass weights. This likely resumes the recent downtrend in cash cattle prices from the historic highs posted earlier [in August].

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Friday, August 29,2014

Record placement lows in Cattle on Feed report disappoint

by Kerry Halladay, Associate Editor
The Aug. 1/July Cattle on Feed report was released Friday, Aug. 22. While everything was predicted down— and everything was down— things weren’t as down as analysts expected. The report has been called mixed neutral to bearish, particularly for record low placements that still disappointed expectations, and for the lagging marketing rate.

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Friday, August 29,2014

The value of the export market

by Kerry Halladay, Associate Editor
Total U.S. Beef Exports 2004-2013) divided by number of federally inspected steers and heifers slaughtered for 2013 (Source: USDA’s Livestock Slaughter 2013 Summary). 3.

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Monday, August 25,2014

Prices continue to fall

by Kerry Halladay, Associate Editor
As with the prior week, cash fed trade developed earlier than usual last week. A trickle of trade began Tuesday with Wednesday seeing the majority of trend-setting prices. Trade on Thursday was in clean-up mode as almost 70,000 head were confirmed sold week-to-date.

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Friday, August 22,2014

The farm bill keeps on going

by Kerry Halladay, Associate Editor
U.S. farmers and ranchers finally got a farm bill in 2014 after waiting years for an update on the 2008 version. The bill was passed with little fanfare—or booing—outside of the agricultural community, but there have been a steady stream of implementation dates and milestones since it was signed by the president.

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Friday, August 22,2014

Four men indicted in Rancho beef scandal

by Kerry Halladay, Associate Editor
Last Monday, the U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag and Lori Chan, USDA Office of Inspector General, announced the indictment and charges against two co-owners and two employees of Rancho Feeding Corporation, the slaughter plant that resulted in 8.7 million pounds of recalled beef in February 2014.

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Friday, August 22,2014

PETA video backfires

by Kerry Halladay, Associate Editor
PETA’s most recent video, taken at a small North Carolina dairy, shows Holstein cows walking through hockdeep liquid manure. The voiceover claims the cows are emaciated and forced to live in the squalid conditions, a detail that caught the attention of dairy farmer and active ag blogger, Carrie Mess, better known online as “Dairy Carrie.

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Monday, August 18,2014

Rising corn tide floats proteins' boats

by Kerry Halladay, Associate Editor
As with July, the August World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report showed most things up from previous estimates. Production estimates for beef, the other major competing proteins, corn, and soybeans were all up for 2014, and up for most in 2015.

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