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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

January 3, 2017

Nine Farm Strategies for
a Profitable 2017

Despite low commodity prices, Ohio farmers can stay in the black in 2017, but they will need to tighten their belts and slash expenses, said Barry Ward, Ohio State University (OSU) agricultural economist.

“Farmers need to re-evaluate all of their inputs in general, and focus on those things that give a clear ROI (return on investment) when corn is bringing $3.50 to $4 per bushel,” said Ward, who works for OSU Extension, the outreach arm of the College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.

Ward offers nine strategies:

  1. 1. Re-evaluate crop production inputs such as prophylactic fungicide applications and specialty fertility products.
  2. 2. Forgo phosphorus and potassium fertilizer if soil tests show there’s enough in the ground for the coming crop.
  3. 3. Review and adjust nitrogen rates and application timing.
  4. 4. Re-evaluate seed technology. “Seeds with fewer GMO (genetically modified organism) traits are usually less expensive,” Ward said. “But this will require more management time — you may have more weed pressure, more insect pressure. You need to weigh the pros and cons — and if you’ve done some on-farm evaluation, you will know what works and is worth the investment.”

For more information, please view the full Angus Beef Bulletin EXTRA article online.

Managing Cattle Through an Arctic Blast

Extremely cold temperatures gripped the cattle feeding areas of the Northern Plains in mid-December with cold temperatures expected the remainder of the winter. Although cattle producers can’t alter the weather, there are management steps that can be taken to help maintain cattle health and performance, explained Warren Rusche, South Dakota State University (SDSU) Extension beef feedlot management associate.

Rusche outlines research showing that by managing bedding, pens and feed intake, producers can help their cattle through the extreme weather.

“Providing bedding is the most useful tool to improve cattle comfort, especially in outside yards,” Rusche said.

Bedding helps cattle preserve body heat and reduce the impact of cold stress on maintenance energy requirements. Visit to read “Bedding During Winter Months Pays Off” to gain insights into how bedding can affect cattle performance during the winter.

When extreme cold weather is expected, feeders should start bedding sooner rather than later, said Rusche, quoting Erik Loe, consulting beef cattle nutritionist with Midwest PMS LLC. “His experience suggests that waiting until cattle are exhausted before providing bedding results in calves simply ‘resting up’ on the bed pack rather than continuing to eat their ration.”

For more information, please view the full Angus Beef Bulletin EXTRA article online.

Five Tips for Bull Selection

Sale season is just around the corner. For bull buyers, it can be a stressful couple of months. Looking at sale books, walking through pens and sitting ringside is time consuming. Planning ahead can ease the stress and help make the selection process a little easier. Following are five steps that will help bull buyers pick their next herd sire.

  1. 1. Establish your needs
    One of the greatest challenges bull buyers face is deciding what they need in a bull. Identifying a desired market will help. Some bulls excel in carcass traits and yearling weight. Others sire great replacement heifers, and there are always bulls advertised for their calving ease and low birth weight. Knowing their desired market helps producers focus on bulls that excel in the right areas.
  2. 2. Have a budget
    Part of the selection process includes finding a bull that’s affordable. The standard rule of thumb on how much to spend on a bull is twice the price of a fat steer. Yet there are always high-dollar lots that go above this price point.

For more information, please view the full Angus Beef Bulletin EXTRA article online.

Farmed Deer Test Positive for Chronic Wasting Disease

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) has been identified in a farmed deer herd in Crow Wing County near Merrifield, Minn. The herd of 33 mule deer and 100 white-tailed deer is registered with the Board of Animal Health. Two, 2-year-old female deer were slaughtered on the farm and both tested positive for CWD. The deer showed no clinical signs of illness.

The Board of Animal Health requires CWD testing of all farmed deer or elk that die or are slaughtered, and are more than 12 months of age. Routine tissue samples were collected at slaughter from the CWD-infected deer. Those samples were tested at the University of Minnesota’s Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory and then forwarded to the National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa, for official confirmation. Those tests confirmed CWD.

“The affected herd has been quarantined,” said Paul Anderson, assistant director at the Board of Animal Health. “At this point, our priority is making sure no deer leave or enter the farm while we work with the owner to determine the best course of action for the herd. We’re also working closely with the Department of Natural Resources and the United States Department of Agriculture as we develop plans.”

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

Sanofi, Boehringer Ingelheim Confirm Business Swap

Sanofi and Boehringer Ingelheim confirmed Jan. 2 that the strategic transaction signed in June 2016, which consists of an exchange of Sanofi’s animal health business (Merial) and Boehringer Ingelheim’s consumer healthcare (CHC) business, has been successfully closed in most markets on Jan. 1, 2017. This closing marks the successful outcome of the business swap that started with exclusive negotiations in December 2015. The closing of the acquisition of Merial in Mexico and the Merial and CHC swap in India have been delayed pending receipt of certain regulatory approvals but both are expected to close early 2017.

The chairman of the board of managing directors of Boehringer Ingelheim, Hubertus von Baumbach, said: “This important achievement is the result of a mutually beneficial agreement implemented in the spirit of a shared vision. Driven by the desire to serve the needs of our customer and enabled by value of our innovative product portfolio, the combined strength of the two organizations will improve Boehringer Ingelheim’s competitiveness in the Animal Health business segment that is so strategically important to our company. We are delighted to welcome the employees of Merial to our team.”

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



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