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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

September 15, 2017

Detecting Defects Hidden in Hides

An Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientist has found a way to find hidden defects in the animal hides that become our footwear, sporting goods, fashion accessories and other leather goods.

About 90% of the 32 million hides produced by the meat industry in the United States each year are exported. Before they are sold in international markets, they are visually inspected, weighed and given a numeric grade. Many hides, however, have hidden defects caused by insect bites, abrasions, scars and natural rough spots.

Processing and selling animal hides is a $2 billion industry in the United States, and the lack of any technology for measuring defects and characterizing quality often leads to disputes after the hides are sold, states Stephen Sothmann, president of the U.S. Hide, Skin and Leather Association, which represents leather goods manufacturers and meatpackers, processors and traders who export hides.

Cheng-Kung Liu, an ARS materials engineer in Wyndmoor, Pa., may have found a solution: The use of ultrasonic waves.

Ultrasonic waves are sound waves. When they are transmitted through an object, defects or rough spots on the object’s surface — even those that can’t be seen by the naked eye — will change the intensity of the signal.

Continue reading this Angus Beef Bulletin EXTRA article online.

Texas Horse Owners Encouraged to
Vaccinate Against Mosquito-borne Illnesses

The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) is encouraging owners to take precautions and vaccinate their equine to protect against the West Nile Virus (WNV) and Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE).

As of Sept. 1, 2017, the Texas Department of State Health Services has reported five cases of WNV and one case of EEE in 2017.

In addition to vaccinations, horse owners also need to reduce the mosquito populations and their possible breeding areas. Recommendations include removing stagnant water sources; keeping animals inside during the bugs’ feeding times, which are typically early in the morning and evening; and using mosquito repellents.

EEE is a mosquito-borne viral disease of all equine species. Infected horses may suddenly die or show progressive central nervous system disorders. Symptoms may include unsteadiness, erratic behavior and a marked loss of coordination. The death rate for animals infected with EEE is 75%-100%.

WNV is the leading cause of arbovirus encephalitis in horses and has been identified in the entire continental United States, most of Canada and Mexico. The case fatality rate for horses exhibiting clinical signs of WNV infection is approximately 33%

Read the full TAHC news release online.

Missouri Cash Rent Rates Drop in Latest USDA Report

Cash rent rates dropped overall in many Missouri counties, according to a Sept. 8 report from the USDA.

Rates for cropland and pastureland dropped overall from the previous year, said University of Missouri (MU) Extension agriculture business specialist Joe Koenen. Koenen leads sessions on Missouri farm leases to educate landowners and tenants on how to develop fair leases for farmland, recreational land, livestock and equipment.

“As I would expect, the northwest portion of the state had the highest average drop in crop rent, averaging $4 per acre,” Koenen said. DeKalb County’s average dropped $27 per acre while Worth County dropped $23. Koenen noted, however, that some counties in northwestern Missouri showed increases.

The statewide average for cropland in Missouri dropped $1 per acre — less than 1%, Koenen said. It went down 2.4% in northwestern Missouri and 1.5% in northeastern Missouri.

Pastureland rates continue to hold steady since less land is available for rent, Koenen said. The statewide average was $31 per acre. Warren County had the lowest rate at $13, and Knox County topped the list at $51.

For more information, read the full MU news release online.

Put Farm Safety into Practice During
National Farm Safety & Health Week, Sept 17-23

Agriculture is among our most hazardous industries, with a work-related death rate of 22.2 deaths per 100,000 workers annually, according to the most recent numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The National Education Center for Agricultural Safety (NECAS), Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health (UMASH), and the U.S. Agricultural Centers funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) are joining forces to recognize National Farm Safety and Health Week as an opportunity to emphasize the importance of working together to prevent injuries and illnesses to agriculture workers.

Information and resources for the week can be found on the UMASH website and through the National Education Center for Agricultural Safety.

Kentucky Grazing Conferences to Focus on Weed Control

Livestock and forage producers can learn about new concepts related to pasture weed control during the Kentucky Grazing Conference.

The University of Kentucky (UK) Cooperative Extension Service and the Kentucky Forage and Grassland Council host the annual conference. This year, organizers will offer the conference at two regional locations. On Oct. 17, the conference is at the Fayette County Extension office in Lexington. It is at the Christian County Extension office in Hopkinsville on Oct. 18. On both days, the conference is from 7:45 a.m. until 4:15 p.m. local time.

Presenters include UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment forage extension specialists, a Virginia Tech weed specialist, a Kentucky dairy and forage producer, a retired grazing specialist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service, a weed-grazing advocate and industry representatives. Topics include the science, theory and practice of weed grazing; emerging technologies in weed control; New Zealand perspectives; and the roles of mixed-species grazing, herbicides and soil fertility and grazing management in an integrated weed-control program.

The afternoon session in Lexington will feature the annual Kentucky Forage Spokesman Contest with the winner advancing to the national contest hosted in January during the American Forage and Grassland Council annual meeting.

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



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