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Angus Journal

The Angus Journal Daily, formerly the Angus e-List, is a compilation of Angus industry news; information about hot topics in the beef industry; and updates about upcoming shows, sales and events. Click here to subscribe.

News Update

March 21, 2016

Quality Driving the Market

Continued expansion of the domestic cow herd, rising interest rates, and the growing strength of the U.S. dollar — all are factors in fueling change in beef supply and demand. What are the implications for beef markets in the coming year? Ted Schroeder, Kansas State Ag Economist, shares his thoughts on where we’re headed.

“The quality, ultimately, is what sells the product. Consumers want fresh, nutritious, safe and high-quality products. Eating is a very social activity, as we know, and those are the things that consumers are demanding of their products,” Schroeder said.

“It’s integral of the industry to help deliver the product that the consumer wants. We see this across the wholesale market. We see it at the retail market, as well, that preference for that high-quality product is driving a wider and wider wedge between the high-quality assured, premium type product in the industry, compared to a less well articulated eating experience,” Schroeder said.

Catch more of Schroeder’s interview on this week’s The Angus Report. You can watch the show at 7:30 a.m. CST each Monday morning at 1:30 p.m. CST Saturday on RFD-TV.

Implementation of Food Safety Modernization Act

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) laid the groundwork for the largest allocation of funds yet — $19 million — to help state agencies support implementation of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). Specifically, these funds will be used to support implementation of the Produce Safety rule, which became final in November 2015 and establishes enforceable safety standards for the production and harvesting of produce on farms.

Implementation of the produce rule is dependent on partnerships between FDA and the states, both to deliver education and technical assistance and to provide on-going inspection, compliance and oversight. To support that partnership, the FDA announced the availability of a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) to solicit applications for cooperative agreements with state regulatory agencies to help plan for and develop the infrastructure needed to implement the Produce Safety Rule.

For more information, view the full FDA news release online.

Soy Growers Oppose Targeting of SNAP in Budget Proposal

The American Soybean Association (ASA) responded to a proposal included in last week’s House Republican budget, passed by the House Budget Committee, that would cut spending on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps, by transitioning it to a block grant-based system administered at the state level.

ASA opposed the proposal based on its longstanding opposition to reopening of the farm bill and policy opposing the separation of the nutrition and agriculture components of the bill. In a statement, ASA President Richard Wilkins of Greenwood, Del., also signaled the association’s desire to unify the farm and food communities moving into debate on the 2018 Farm Bill.

Read more in the complete ASA news release online.

$6 Million for Technologies for Plant, Animal Phenomics and Microbiomes

The USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) Biological Sciences Directorate (BIO) announced $6 million in available funding to support the development of transformative plant and animal phenomics and microbiome technologies.

This USDA-NIFA, NSF-BIO Joint Activity is soliciting Early Concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER) proposals that address the development of innovative approaches for phenotyping and microbiome characterizations, as well as for elucidating the role of microbiomes in plants and animals. This activity addresses critical gaps in tools available for characterizing plant and animal phenotypes and microbiomes, in part to more fully realize the potential of low-cost high throughput sequencing and genotyping technologies.

For more information, please view the full NIFA news release online.

Beef Cattle Conference and Ag Tour, April 26-27

The second annual Beef Cattle Conference and Ag Tour on April 26-27, sponsored by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Hemphill County, will bring top names from across the country to address pressing cattle industry issues, a coordinator said.

“Our theme is Wave of the Future Regarding Beef Cattle Marketing,” said Andy Holloway, AgriLife Extension agriculture and natural resources agent in Hemphill County. “This is a critical time in the beef cattle marketing business with prices for our beef product beginning to trend down.

“Producers who have purchased high-dollar replacements are going to have to use every marketing tool available to weather the storm and to keep ag lenders happy,” Holloway said. “This meeting will have some excellent appeal throughout our region and into Oklahoma and Kansas.”

For more information, please visit the Angus Journal Virtual Library calendar of upcoming events here.


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