American Lamb Board New Chair and Annual Report

cindy zimmerman Leave a Comment

The American Lamb Board has elected a new chairman and released its 2018 Annual Report.

Dale Thorne, a sheep producer from Michigan, has been elected chairman of the American Lamb Board (ALB). He is serving his second 3-year term on the Board, representing the lamb feeding sector. Thorne has previously served as ALB vice chairman, treasurer and chairman of the Research Committee.

Thorne and his family have a flock of 1,000 Polypay ewes, half of which lamb in the fall and half in the spring. Because he is near Detroit, which is the largest Muslim community in the US, Thorne sees first-hand the value of both traditional and non-traditional markets. The majority of the farm’s lambs are marketed at about 80 pounds. The farm also produces hay for the horse market, and row crops such as corn and soybeans.

In addition, the Lamb Board has released its Fiscal Year 2018 annual report which directs the American Lamb Checkoff.

FY 2018 result highlights include:
Blogger Lambassadors developed 38 new American Lamb recipes and reached over a million consumers
2,353 consumers attended a Lamb Jam event and 54% were new attendees
Lamb flavor research addressing quality factors entered final phases
ALB showcased American Lamb at 24 festivals and events across the US

Click here to see the comlete annual report.

AgWired Animal, American Lamb Board, Animal Agriculture

Poultry Industry Recognizes Leaders, Honorees

carrie muehling Leave a Comment

2019 chairman of U.S. Poultry & Egg Association, John Prestage (left), senior vice president of Prestage Farms, Clinton, N.C., was presented with the traditional “working man’s gavel” by outgoing chairman, Tom Hensley, president, Fieldale Farms.

The U.S. Poultry & Egg Association (USPOULTRY) elected new leaders and presented several awards at the International Poultry Expo, part of the 2019 International Production & Processing Expo.

John Prestage, senior vice president, Prestage Farms, Clinton, N.C., was elected chairman of the board of directors. He previously served as vice chairman. Prestage was presented with the time-honored
“working man’s gavel” by Tom Hensley, 2018 chairman.

Greg Hinton, Rose Acre Farms, Seymour, Indiana, was named vice chairman. Mike Levengood, Perdue Foods, Salisbury, Maryland, was named treasurer. Mikell Fries, Claxton Poultry, Claxton, Georgia, was named secretary. Tom Hensley, Fieldale Farms, Baldwin, Georgia, is immediate past chairman.

USPOULTRY and the USPOULTRY Foundation recognized Dr. Kenneth Anderson as the 2019 recipient of the annual Charles Beard Research Excellence Award. Tommy Bagwell, former chairman & CEO of American Proteins, received the Harold E. Ford Lifetime Achievement Award. Mike Robach, retired vice president, Corporate Food Safety, Quality & Regulatory for Cargill, was named USPOULTRY’s Workhorse of the Year.

AgWired Animal, Animal Agriculture, Poultry

Animal Ag Bites 2/11

carrie muehling Leave a Comment

  • The American Feed Industry Association and Feedstuffs announced four category winners for the 2018 Feed Facility of the Year program. AFIA congratulates Famo Feeds of Freeport, Minn., as the winner of the commercial dry livestock feed plant category; Koch Foods of Morton, Miss., as the winner of the integrator category; Quality Liquid Feeds of Clovis, N.M., as the winner of the liquid feed plant category; and Trouw Nutrition of Highland, Ill., as the winner of the premix manufacturing plant category.
  • The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association’s Center for Public Policy released new Cost/Benefit Principles that will help guide its decision-making process on various policy proposals regarding climate change.
  • The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, a contractor to the Beef Checkoff Program, has announced the winners of its 2019 Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) Awards at the 2019 Cattle Industry Convention in New Orleans, La. You can read more on each of the award winners’ operations at
  • Linda Davis, a cattlewoman from Cimarron, N.M., has received the respected 2019 Swan Family Leadership Award for her decades of service to the cattle and beef industry. The award was made at the Best of Beef Breakfast Feb. 1 during the 2019 Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show in New Orleans, La.
  • CattleFax has introduced its annual Cow-Calf Survey. Information requested in the survey provides participants and the rest of the industry with valuable information regarding industry benchmarks and trends. The survey can be accessed here. The deadline to complete the survey is Feb. 28, 2019.
  • CattleFax elected a new slate of officers at this year’s annual business meeting Jan. 31, 2019, in New Orleans, La., held in conjunction with the 2019 Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show. The new CattleFax president is Don Quincey of Chiefland, Fla., a 5th generation rancher and cattle feeder in Florida and past president of the Florida Cattlemen’s Association.
AgWired Animal, Animal Bites

New Holland Roll-Belt Balers on Display at NCBA Trade Show

chuck zimmerman Leave a Comment

During the NCBA Trade Show I visited with New Holland which was just releasing new and improved Roll-Belt Round Balers. Improvements came from a recent Penn State University study on “Bale Density Effects on Baleage Quality.” I talked to Curt Hoffman, New Holland and Jessica Williamson, Extension Forage Specialist, Penn State. Jessica was one of the authors of the Penn State study.

A recent study completed by Penn State University’s College of Agricultural Sciences confirms round bale density leads to improved cattle nutrition and producer return on investment. In the study, New Holland Roll-Belt™ round balers produced the highest-density bales in all tests compared to three leading competitors.

“This research affirms the many benefits of denser bales we have discovered through years in the field,” says Curt Hoffman, hay and forage crop packaging and marketing manager for New Holland, North America. “Not only does higher bale density improve feed quality and lower costs, it improves producer ROI through a variety of efficiency gains.”

The study found that denser bales had greater total acid production and stayed cooler through the fermentation process. This increases the whole-bale bunk life of round bales through reduced spoilage, allowing for the feeding of larger-diameter bales to the same number and size of cattle without waste. Penn State observed up to 25 more hours of bunk life due to higher bale density.

“What research has shown in the past is that with any fermented forage or any ensiled forage, typically the denser you can pack that forage, the better fermentation you’re going to have,” says Jessica A. Williamson, Ph.D., extension forage specialist for Penn State University. “[Better fermentation] overall is going to give you a better-quality product to feed your animals.”

Higher density equates to up to 39 percent fewer bales, resulting in less twine or net wrap used as well as plastic silage film, reduced labor, and less overall baling and bale-moving time in the field.

Learn more in my interview with Curt and Jessica here: Interview with New Holland

2019 Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show Photo Album

Official Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show virtual newsroom

Ag Group, AgWired Animal, Audio, Cattle Industry Conference, New Holland

Merck and Beef Checkoff Sponsor Stockmanship & Stewardship Events

cindy zimmerman Leave a Comment

Five 2019 sessions of the Stockmanship & Stewardship program were announced at the Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show last week. The events are made possible through sponsorship from Merck Animal Health and will be coordinated by the producer education team at the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and local host organizations. Additional funding and support for the program is provided by the beef checkoff-funded Beef Quality Assurance program.

The dates and locations are:
Tulare, Calif. March 20-21
Ames, Iowa June 28-29
Fort Collins, Colo. TBD August
Manhattan, Kan. September 20-21
West Monroe, La. October 4-5

“For the third year, we’re thrilled to be able to hold these sessions that focus on proper cattle handling and stewardship,” said Chase DeCoite, director of BQA at NCBA. “Producers who have attended these events in the past have gone home with greater understanding of the best practices in working with cattle in their particular area of the country.”

Stockmanship & Stewardship events include live cattle demonstration and hands-on opportunities. They also include BQA training and classroom sessions highlighting issues that affect cattle producers in each region. In addition to cattle handling and effective stockmanship, possible elements of regional sessions include sustainability and environmental stewardship, animal health and regional issues and hot topics.

Learn more in this press conference from #CattleCon19 with DeCoite, Angela Baysinger and Amanda Welsh with Merck Animal Health Merck Animal Health/NCBA Press Conference

2019 Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show Photo Album

Official Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show virtual newsroom

AgWired Animal, Animal Agriculture, Animal Health, Audio, Beef, Beef Checkoff, Cattle Industry Conference, CBB, Merck, NCBA, NCBA Convention

USDA Tracking Farm Bill Implementation

cindy zimmerman Leave a Comment

Now that the federal government is back at work, USDA Deputy Secretary Steve Censky says they are moving as quickly as possible to implement the new farm bill.

During a Farm Foundation Forum on the realities of implementing the 2018 farm bill, Censky said USDA is using a “Fitbit” type of approach to tracking goals. “We have our own ‘FBit’ we call a Farm Bit at USDA and it’s a Farm Bill Implementation tracker,” said Censky.

Censky chairs USDA’s Farm Bill Implementation Working Group that includes representation from each of the agency’s mission areas. “We have asked all of our agency’s to fill out this ‘FarmBit,’” said Censky. “We look forward to sharing more details of what the timelines are going to be in the next few weeks.”

The Farm Foundation Forum also comments from Senate Agriculture Committee chair Pat Roberts (R-KS) and a panel with Barry Flinchbaugh, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Agricultural Economics at Kansas State University; Tara Smith, Vice President of Federal Affairs with Michael Torrey Associates; and Alan Bjerga, Senior Vice President of Communications with the National Milk Producers Federation.

Listen to Censky’s comments here:
USDA Deputy Secretary Steve Censky at Farm Foundation Forum

AgWired Animal, AgWired Precision, Audio, farm bill, Farm Foundation, usda

CrystalBlox™ at the #CattleCon19 Trade Show

cindy zimmerman Leave a Comment

CrystalBlox™ is the newest block form developed by Crystalyx Brand Supplements. It combines the economical nutrient delivery and fortification of compressed blocks with the consistent and predictable intake of low moisture block technology. CrystalBlox will fit a wide variety of feeding situations, where protein delivery is critical.

CrystalBlox is designed and formulated to provide supplemental protein to help improve forage utilization by increased forage intake and improved fiber digestibility. In situations where forage crude protein levels are low due to drought or with advanced maturity such as fall and winter forages, CrystalBlox can provide the supplemental protein to help extract more energy and nutrients from your forage supplies.

We sat down with Mark Robbins, Crystalyx, during the 2019 Cattle Industry Convention and National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Trade Show to get the scoop on the benefits of CrystalBlox. Listen to the interview or watch the video below:
Interview with Mark Robbins, CRYSTALYX® Brand Supplements

2019 Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show Photo Album

AgWired Animal, Alltech, Animal Agriculture, Animal Health, Audio, Beef, Cattle Industry Conference, Livestock, Nutrition, Video

Scholarships Presented at #CattleCon19

cindy zimmerman Leave a Comment

Two University of California-Davis students seeking their doctorate degrees received $15,000 W.D. Farr Scholarships for 2018-19 from the National Cattlemen’s Foundation. Emily Andreini and Sarah Klopatic each received the award, which were presented at the Best of Beef Breakfast during the 2019 Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show in New Orleans.

The Farr Scholarships will allow these students to further their study in fields that will benefit the cattle and beef industry. Andreini is seeking her Ph.D. degree in animal biology while Klopatic is studying for her Ph.D. in animal science.

In addition, ten $1,500 scholarships for the next school year were awarded by the National Cattlemen’s Foundation to outstanding students pursuing careers in the beef industry. The scholarships are sponsored by the Chicago Mercantile Exchange Group (CME).

Also receiving a trip to the 2019 Cattle Industry Convention as the overall winner of the scholarship was Olivia Willrett of Illinois, a student at Colorado State University. Willrett wrote an essay for her scholarship entry titled “Tracing Beef from Farm to Fork.”

2019 Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show Photo Album

AgWired Animal, Beef, Cattle Industry Conference, NCBA, NCBA Convention

New Beef Leadership Elected in New Orleans

cindy zimmerman Leave a Comment

Jennifer Houston of Tennessee was named president of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association at the organization’s annual meeting in New Orleans last week, as Marty Smith of Florida became NCBA president-elect. Jerry Bohn (Kansas) was elected NCBA vice president. Don Schiefelbein (Minnesota) was elected chair of the NCBA Policy Division and Todd Wilkinson (South Dakota) was elected vice chair. Laurie Munns (Utah) was elected chair of the NCBA Federation Division and Buck Wehrbein (Nebraska) was elected vice chair.

Houston and her husband, Mark, own and operate East Tennessee Auction Market in Sweetwater. She has been active in the beef industry for more than 30 years, first serving at the state level and has been an NCBA board member since 1996.

Smith is a rancher and an attorney from Wacahoota, Florida where he operates Smith Brothers-Wacahoota, LLC, a cow/calf operation that has been in continuous operation since 1852. He is also the son of Jo Ann Smith, the first woman president of NCBA in 1985 and first chair of the Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion and Research Board in 1986.

Elected to serve on the Beef Promotion Operating Committee from the Federation, joining Munns, Wehrbein and ten members elected from the Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion and Research Board, were: Katie Brenny (Minnesota), Gary Deering (South Dakota), Bradley Hastings (Texas), Chris Jeffcoat (Pennsylvania), Clark Price (North Dakota), Jeff Rudolph (Nebraska), Don Terry (Tennessee) and VeaBea Thomas (South Dakota).

Listen to interviews with Houston and Smith here:
New NCBA president Jennifer Houston

NCBA president-elect Marty Smith

2019 Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show Photo Album

Official Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show virtual newsroom

AgWired Animal, Audio, Beef, Beef Board, Beef Checkoff, Cattle Industry Conference, CBB, NCBA, NCBA Convention

NCBA Announces Policy Priorities at #CattleCon19

cindy zimmerman Leave a Comment

As over 9,000 members of the cattle industry gathered for the Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show last week in New Orleans, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) released its official Policy Priorities for 2019.

While the Policy Priorities book fills almost 140 pages, the organization will focus on four main issue areas this year – fake meat, trade and market access, dietary guidelines, and regulatory reform and implementation.

NCBA was successful in 2018 in arguing for the USDA to have primary jurisdiction over the inspection and marketing of lab-produced and plant-based fake meat. Now in 2019 the group will work to ensure that a regulatory framework that protects the health of consumers, prevents false and deceptive marketing, and ensures a level playing field for real beef products.

Trade priorities will focus on a bilateral trade agreement with Japan, securing swift passage of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), and expanding access for U.S. beef in key markets like China, the United Kingdom, and the European Union.

NCBA will be working to protect the scientific credibility of Dietary Guidelines and promote accurate information about the nutritional advantages of beef as part of a balanced diet as the federal government begins the process of updating the guidelines.

Regulatory priorities includes implementation of the 2018 Farm Bill; finalizing a new water rule to replace the 2015 Waters of the U.S. rule; modernizing and streamlining the Endangered Species Act, National Environmental Policy Act, and federal grazing regulations; and promoting antimicrobial stewardship by producers and preserving access to key veterinary technologies.

NCBA Senior Vice President of Government Relations Colin Woodall talks about the policy priorities in this interview –
Colin Woodall, NCBA

2019 Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show Photo Album

Official Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show virtual newsroom

AgWired Animal, Animal Agriculture, Audio, Beef, Cattle Industry Conference, NCBA, NCBA Convention