Cattle Country - December 2021

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PUBLISHED BY MANITOBA BEEF PRODUCERS

DECEMBER 2021

Winter arrived in Manitoba in a big way with a mid-November storm system depositing copious amounts of badly needed moisture across the southern half of the province. (Photo credit: Andre Steppler)

Canadian beef producers had a strong voice at COP26 Farmers and ranchers are among the first people to see and feel the effects of climate change, but they are also in a good position to help reverse some of those effects as well. A recently published study by Nature United showed that natural climate solutions could reduce Canada’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by up to 78 mega tonnes of CO2 equivalent by 2030. Who are the people that offer many of those natural climate solutions? Farmers and ranchers, says Fawn Jackson, Canadian Cattleman’s Association (CCA) Director of Policy and International Affairs, speaking at the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference, (COP26), held in Glasgow, Scotland from 31 October to 13 November. “Our goal is to make sure that the farmer and rancher perspective is understood and taken into serious consideration for any of the commitments that are going to be made for climate change, and for recognition that farming, ranching and agriculture in general has a huge opportunity to contribute to the solutions and the fight against climate change,” Jackson said. As part of a panel that included the CCA, the National Farmers Union, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, and the Pan American Farmers Association, Jackson emphasized the role that the Canadian beef industry is already playing to address climate change and its goals going forward. They include building a community that will ensure the needed solutions can be effectively implemented. “Agriculture is a complex system, and if we only bring one perspective, we are not going to get the solutions for climate change right,” Jackson said. “We need to not only have farmers at the table, but also conservation organisa-

tions, the full supply chain and governments.” The Canadian beef industry is already well ahead when it comes to multi-stakeholder partnerships, such as the Canadian Roundtable on Sustainable Beef, which has developed a number of industry goals related to climate change. They include reducing the GHG footprint of beef production by 33 per cent, protecting 35 million acres of endangered native grasslands, and reducing food waste by 50 per cent by 2030. Canada a global leader in sustainable beef production The Canadian beef industry continues to be a global leader in sustainable beef production. Beef farmers and ranchers manage lands that store 1.5 billion tonnes of carbon, and has half the greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint per kilogram of production compared to the global average. So. although the Canadian beef industry already has one of the lowest GHG footprints in the world, there needs to continued, long term investment in research and technology transfer, Jackson said. “It is not our goal to be the best in the world, but to get everybody to a position where they are able to reduce their GHG footprint,” she said. “We need to make sure that there is not only investment in Canada, but strategic, long-term, significant investment globally in agriculture, which has been significantly under-funded for far too long.” The industry also needs market-based solutions such as carbon or ecosystem services markets, that enable farmers and ranchers to implement natural climate solutions in an economically viable way. “We know we need farmers, so how can we make sure that they can economically survive as we ask them to do more and more,” Jackson says. “One of the things that is very exciting for us in the beef world is how feed additives are able to reduce GHG emissions anywhere from 30 to 90 per cent, but how do we make sure that that doesn’t push

the farmers into the red by asking them to do that? With carbon markets we also need to make sure that it doesn’t just push production into other parts of the world, but that we can support both our local and our global farmers.” Important to be a part of the conversation Jackson, who also participated in a question-andanswer session at COP26, said a few things surprised her, including the extent of people’s knowledge about some of the current issues in agriculture. “Some of the questions spoke to things that are connected to climate change, but are on the periphery of that conversation,” she said. “For example, one of the questions was about young producers, and how with the rising cost of land, are we going to make sure that there are farmers for the future. There was also a question about the scale of farms and concern about small farms not being able to survive in these times. So, yes people are certainly worried about climate change, and recognizing that agriculture can be a solution, but they’re also worried about other things in agriculture too.” Jackson said she was also pleased to see the agricultural community increasing its voice at the summit and being recognized in its role as a solution provider. “When you talk to some of the experts, particularly within the Canadian or the North American context, it is very well understood the importance of beef farmers and ranchers, not only in the protection of native grasslands, but also in the circular economy,” Jackson said. “So, recognizing that cattle are often eating hulls, or fruits and vegetables that aren’t suitable for grocery stores or are eating barley that was headed for malt barley but didn’t make it on the quality side of things, or that they are grazing after a crop has been harvested. That is a growing area of understanding of the that importance of agriculture.” Page 2 

President's Column

Digitizing the consumer beef experience

Making every bite count

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BY ANGELA LOVELL


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CATTLE COUNTRY December 2021

Reflecting on a year dominated by drought 2021 will be remembered for the worst drought conditions that Manitoba has experienced in a generation. While it will still be months before we are able quantify the damage it inflicted on our industry, the financial losses, mental toll and the subsequent reduction to our breeding herd will be major factors that impact our industry for years to come. Manitoba Beef Producers played a pivotal role in addressing the impacts of the drought, first by listening to producers about the conditions and their challenges and then through exceptional collaboration with governments in developing a response to these challenges. Some of the key responses included the opening of the Ag Action program for intake for BMP 503 ‒ Managing Livestock Access to Riparian Areas ‒ to help address water shortages for livestock. There were modifications the MASC’s crop insurance programs to provide incentives to convert marginal cereal and corn crops for use as livestock feed. Finally came the AgriRecovery program designed to support producers that were struggling to maintain their breeding herd, including feed and transportation assistance components. However, all of these measures only partially ad-

developing key drought initiatives. Our General Manager, Carson Callum ensured we were all working cohesively to make progress on the issues and played a huge role in communicating to the public, government staff and producers alike. Thank you for all your hard work. Looking ahead to 2022, I expect that MBP directors and staff, as well as our fellow provincial and national industry associations will continue to dig into the issue of climate change and conservation. It is clear to me that our sector has an opportunity to lead on this issue. We can do this by providing credible means to sequester more carbon, to provide high quality wildlife habitat and to help maintain wetlands, while also helping farmers and ranchers benefit from their longstanding sustainable practices. If the goal of governments is truly to find sustainable solutions that address both climate change and the conservation of natural spaces, there is no better partner than beef producers in this endeavour. Finally, I would like to wish everybody a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Here’s to a prosperous and moist 2022!

TYLER FULTON President's Column

dressed the impact of the drought affecting our farms and ranches. If I can draw one lesson from my experience of the last eight months, it would be to focus more attention on preparing for emergencies. Whether at the farm, industry organization, or government level, we must look at the lessons learned and work to be better prepared for future challenges. The staff of MBP worked exceptionally hard in addressing the drought situation. David Hultin, our Communications Coordinator, did an excellent job managing the media and key messages that led to an unprecedented awareness of the issue in the urban public both inside and beyond Manitoba. Maureen Cousins, MBP Policy Analyst, spent hours listening to producers describe their situations and hours more providing support and research for

Wrapping up 2021 with a note of thanks Season’s greetings all! Hopefully everyone is keeping safe and warm as we move into the winter months. A decent amount of snow hit the province in mid-November, which is good step for our moisture deficit. We will need a substantial amount of snow over the next few months to address the deficit going in to next growing season. Let’s just say I won’t complain at all this year about shoveling snow. I want to greatly thank all who attended our virtual and in-person district meetings this fall. It was wonderful to get out across the province to see many of you again face to face. Lots of great conversation was had at all the meetings. The main topics of discussion at these meetings were drought, agricultural Crown lands, and the relationship between the beef sector and climate change. The updates from staff at the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association on various matters, as well as the one on the Livestock Predation Protection Pilot Project from Ray Bittner were also well received. I look forward to our 43rd Annual General Meeting at the Victoria Inn in Brandon on February 10, 2022 to continue the great conversations and to connect with many of you again. The aim is to have a hybrid format with an in-person meeting ‒ dependent on COVID-19 related requirements in effect at the time ‒ and a virtual option for those unable to make it to Brandon. We are still planning

drought potential is still a major concern. I encourage producers to strongly look at the available business risk management (BRM) tools available to help mitigate the risks associated with these extreme weather events that have been happening more frequently it seems. As well, provide us with feedback at MBP on what works and what doesn’t work with the programs as we advocate for improvements to the suite of BRMs offered to the beef sector. I hope many of you were able to watch our first episode of Great Taste of Manitoba that aired on November 23. The featured video with the Plett family and Tim Sopuck from MHHC was very well done and delivered a positive message about the beef industry. I thank all involved for getting that put together. As well, I want to thank Tamara Sarkisian, our Food Expert, for her phenomenal recipes featured on that episode. Be sure to tune in to the second episode airing on December 4. It will feature a profile of Brett McRae and his family. I also want to welcome our new team member, Jennifer Patryluk. She joined the team mid-November as our Administrative Assistant, and her skillset will be very valuable for many files at MBP. I look forward to working with her. Before I close, I just want to wish everyone a very merry Christmas, happy holidays, and cheers to a great New Year. Carson

CARSON CALLUM

General Manager’s Column the topics of discussion for our AGM, and if you have any suggestions on ones you would like to see please give us a call. I want to give a shout out to Manitoba Forage and Grassland Association for their great regenerative agriculture conference they held in Brandon on November 15-17. It was sure nice to get back to an in-person industry-related conference to connect with folks in the sector. It was very well organized, and I look forward to future events they put on. A key takeaway for me is that regenerative agriculture is not a strict definition, but relates to many of the naturebased environmental solutions producers are already undertaking on their farms and ranches. As we look ahead to 2022, environmental solutions that cattle producers provide are going to be a key area of discussion. With all the global attention on climate change, especially following the COP26 event in Glasgow, Scotland, positioning the Canadian beef sector as part of the solutions will be crucial. It’s hard to say what events will unfold in 2022, but the

Climate change solutions on tap  Page 1 But, Jackson said, there are also still many negative views about meat production and its contribution to GHG emissions and climate change issues, so it’s vitally important to continue to engage in the conversation. “If we’re not there representing that thorough understanding of the Canadian agricultural ecosystem, people can get swept up in thinking that meat is a problem, and not understand that it’s part of DISTRICT 1

ALFRED EPP

a solution, not only for the health of our agro-ecosystem, but also the health of people around the globe,” she says. Investment in climate change solutions good for agriculture One thing that is exciting for the future, Jackson said, is the amount of financing around the world that is now being put into climate change solutions. Examples include the launch of the Global Action Agenda on Transforming Agricultural Innovation, a collation of

STEVEN MANNS

R.M. of Albert, Cameron, Whitewater, Edward, Brenda, Winchester, Morton

R.M. of Elton, North Cypress, North Norfolk, Cornwallis, Oakland, South Cypress, Victoria, South Norfolk

DISTRICT 2

DISTRICT 6

R.M. of Riverside, Strathcona, Argyle, Lorne, Turtle Mountain, Roblin, Louise, Pembina

R.M. of Wallace, Woodworth, Daly, Pipestone, Sifton, Whitehead, Glenwood

NANCY HOWATT

DISTRICT 3

ANDRE STEPPLER

R.M. of Portage la Prairie, Cartier, Grey, MacDonald, Dufferin, Thompson, Roland, Morris, Stanley, Rhineland, Montcalm

DISTRICT 4

KEVIN DUDDRIDGE

R.M. of Richot, Ste. Anne, Hanover, De Salaberry, La Broquerie, Franklin, Stuartburn, Piney, LGD Reynolds

DISTRICT 5

MELISSA ATCHISON VICE-PRESIDENT

DISTRICT 7

TYLER FULTON PRESIDENT

R.M. of Russell, Silver Creek, Rossburn, Ellice, Birtle, Shoal Lake, Strathclair, Archie, Miniota, Hamiota, Blanshard

DISTRICT 8

MATTHEW ATKINSON 2

ND

VICE-PRESIDENT

R.M. of Harrison, Clanwilliam, Rosedale, Glenella, Saskatchewan, Odanah, Minto, Langford, Lansdowne, Westbourne, LGD Park

45 countries that which aims to leverage more than $4 billion of public investment in innovations such as climate-resilient crops, digital technologies and solutions that improve soil quality. Ten global commodity companies, including JBS and Cargill, have signed a pledge to end deforestation in the supply chain by 2030 as the world seeks to limit climate change. “Because we are such a big solution provider, I think that there’s going to be

R.M. of Woodlands, Rockwood, St. Andrews, Rosser, St. Francis Xavier, Springfield, Tache, Whitemouth, Lac du Bonnet, Brokenhead, St. Clements, LGD of Alexander, Pinawa

DISTRICT 10

MIKE DUGUID SECRETARY

more investment in agriculture that is environmentally focussed than we have ever seen previously,” Jackson said. “It has been strategic of the Canadian beef industry to have a strong plan on where we want to go and how those dollars might be invested for the future. We know what we want to accomplish and the actions that it’s going to take to get there. We are going to have to continue to engage in those conversations, and exciting times are ahead.”

DISTRICT 13

DISTRICT 14

MARY PAZIUK

R.M. of Shell River, Shellmouth,Hillsburg, Boulton, Grandview, Gilbert Plains, Ethelbert, Mossey River, Dauphin, LGD Park

JIM BUCHANAN

R.M. of Minitonas, Swan River, Mountain, The Pas

MANITOBA BEEF PRODUCERS

COMMUNICATIONS & MARKETING LEAD

ARVID NOTTVEIT

Ph: 1-800-772-0458

Deb Walger

DISTRICT 12

PH - (204) 772-4542 FX - (204) 774-3264 info@mbbeef.ca www.mbbeef.ca

R.M. of Bifrost, Gimli, Fisher, Armstrong

DISTRICT 11

R.M. of Siglunes, Grahamdale, Eriksdale, Coldwell, St. Laurent

MARK GOOD TREASURER

R.M. of Lawrence, Ochre River, Ste. Rose, McCreary, Alonsa

Unit 220, 530 Century Street Winnipeg, MB R3H 0Y4

GENERAL MANAGER Carson Callum

POLICY ANALYST

DISTRICT 9

TREVOR SUND

Maureen Cousins

www.mbbeef.ca

David Hultin

FINANCE

OFFICE ASSISTANT Jennifer Patryluk

LIVESTOCK PREDATION PREVENTION PROJECT COORDINATOR Ray Bittner

CATTLE COUNTRY EDITOR David Hultin

DESIGNED BY

Trinda Jocelyn


December 2021 CATTLE COUNTRY

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New Agricultural Crown Lands forage productivity pilot program launched (Joint federal/provincial government news release) The governments of Canada and Manitoba are investing up to $1 million in the new Agricultural Crown Lands Forage Productivity Pilot Program aimed at improving productivity and sustainability of Agricultural Crown Land forage leases, Federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Marie-Claude Bibeau and Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development Minister Ralph Eichler announced October 29. “Canada’s hardworking farmers and food processors have a solid track record of sound management practices,” said the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food. “This new pilot project will encourage Manitoba Agricultural Crown Land lease holders to adopt further beneficial management practices in their operations, helping them improve productivity while further protecting the environment.” The Agricultural Crown Lands Forage Productivity Pilot Program will provide targeted financial assistance to Agricultural Crown Land forage leaseholders to adopt best management practices to sustainably increase the productivity on their Agricultural Crown Land forage leases.

“This pilot project aligns directly with our Manitoba Protein Advantage Strategy of increasing forage productivity on our Agricultural Crown Lands, and supports the mandate of the Agricultural Crown Lands program to optimize forage capacity,” said Eichler. “Cost-shared programs such as this can help offset costs for leaseholders and reduce barriers to making improvements on Agricultural Crown Lands.” Eligible recipients must have an active Agricultural Crown Land lease that is in good standing and must complete an Environmental Farm Plan. Eligible items under the Agricultural Crown Lands Forage Productivity Pilot Program include grazing management plans, water source development and watering systems, cross-fencing for pasture management, and forage rejuvenation such as forage establishment and brush management. Improvements must be completed within the one-year pilot project. Farmers can begin submitting applications on Nov. 8, 2021. “In managing tens of thousands of acres of Agricultural Crown land the lease holders provide considerable ecological goods and services that benefit all Manitobans, including carbon sequestra-

tion and providing habitat for a variety of plant and animal species,” said Tyler Fulton, president, Manitoba Beef Producers. “Implementing beneficial management practices helps contribute to improved soil and pasture and forage health on these lands, and we believe the pilot program should prove to be valuable in this regard.” “This is a good first step in the right direction to help producers improve forage and pasture quality in the pilot project area,” said Larry Wegner, chair, Manitoba Forage and Grassland Association. “As a pilot project, it also means the project has potential to help producers as required in those key program areas right away, with the potential for possible design and delivery in other key forage-producing areas across the province.” The Ag Action Manitoba Program Assurance: Environment Beneficial Management Practices (BMP) is also accepting applications starting November 8, 2021. The program provides targeted incentives to farmers to advance the adoption of beneficial management practices. These practices reduce identified environmental risks, improve agro-ecosystem resilience, build public trust and improve environmental sustainability of farm op-

erations in Manitoba. Through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership programming, the governments of Canada and Manitoba help farmers implement and adopt beneficial management practices on their farms that are identified in their Environmental Farm Plans. The Partnership is a five-year, $3-billion commitment by the federal, provincial and territorial governments that supports Canada’s agri-food and agri-products sectors. This includes a $2-billion commitment that is costshared 60 per cent federally and 40 per cent provincially/territorially for programs that are designed and delivered by provinces and territories. For more information, visit: https://agriculture. canada.ca/en/about-our-department/ key-departmental-initiatives/canadianagricultural-partnership. For more information on the Agricultural Crown Lands Forage Productivity Pilot Program, and other Ag Action Manitoba- Assurance Beneficial Management Practices programming in Manitoba, please visit: www.gov.mb.ca/ agriculture/canadian-agricultural-partnership/ag-action-manitoba-program/ for-farmers.html.

Canada’s Ministers of Agriculture set direction for next agricultural framework (November 10, 2021 Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada News Release) Canada’s federal, provincial, and territorial (FPT) Ministers of Agriculture wrapped up their annual conference by issuing the “Guelph Statement”. Their shared vision for the next agricultural policy framework will position our agrifood producers, processors and others in the sector for continued success as world leaders in sustainable agriculture, and will enable a globally competitive sector. Ministers also acknowledged and recognized the hard work of everyone involved in maintaining the strong food supply chain for Canadians during COVID-19. Ministers agreed on the sustainable agriculture approach needed to help shape the next policy framework, which includes environmental, social and economic considerations in all priority areas. Ministers agreed on the following five priority areas for the next framework: (1) climate change and the environment; (2) science, research and innovation; (3) market development and trade; (4) building sector capacity and growth; and (5) resiliency and public trust.

The vision agreed upon by Ministers for the next agricultural policy framework charts an ambitious path for the sector. It states that “Canada is recognized as a world leader in sustainable agriculture and agrifood production and drives forward to 2028 from a solid foundation of regional strengths and diversity, as well as the strong leadership of the Provinces and Territories, in order to rise to the climate change challenge, to expand new markets and trade while meeting the expectations of consumers, and to feed Canadians and a growing global population.” Ministers also agreed to continue to improve the suite of business risk management (BRM) programs to make them timely, equitable, and easy to understand, while supporting the competitiveness and sustainability of the sector. During the conference, Ministers made progress on other key action areas that will help position the sector for economic recovery and sustainable growth, including labour, African swine fever, Animal Health Canada, trade and market access, regulatory priorities (including interprovincial trade and the Canadian Plant Health Council), retail fees, and mental health.

“Today, my provincial and territorial colleagues and I agreed on an ambitious vision that will guide the development of the policy framework to follow the Canadian Agricultural Partnership. We all want to ensure that our agriculture is sustainable and that our farmers and agri-food entrepreneurs succeed. They must be incredibly resilient and innovative in the face of many challenges, including climate change, fluctuations in international trade, and labour shortages. Together, we will invest wisely to grow the sector while protecting our environment, reducing our emissions and safeguarding the well-being of those who ensure our food security.” - The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, federal Minister of Agriculture and AgriFood

www.mbbeef.ca

QUICK FACTS • Canadian farmers have always been good stewards of the land and have a solid track record of sustainable agriculture, with sound management practices, innovation, and new technologies. Over the past two decades, farmers have doubled the value of production while stabilizing greenhouse gas emissions. In that time, the amount of agricultural emissions per dollar of GDP generated by the sector has dropped by half. • The Guelph Statement reflects the large amount of input received so far through stakeholder consultations over the past year. Consultations are continuing, to gather input from a wide range of stakeholders. • The next agricultural policy framework will follow the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, a five-year, $3 billion commitment by Canada’s federal, provincial and territorial governments that supports Canada’s agri-food and agri-products sectors. The Partnership includes both federal programs, as well as those that are cost-shared between the federal (60%) and provincial/territorial (40%) governments. • Despite many challenges over the past year, including the COVID-19 pandemic and extreme weather events, the Canadian agri-food sector remains resilient and poised for continued growth. Exports of agriculture and agri-food products continue to grow, worth nearly $74 billion in 2020, compared to $67 billion in 2019. • The agriculture and agri-food value chain continues to be an economic engine driving Canada’s economy, contributing nearly $140 billion, or 7.4% of national GDP, and responsible for more than 2 million jobs in Canada.

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CATTLE COUNTRY December 2021

Proposed amendments, resolutions process for MBP AGM The following is an update on the resolutions process for MBP’s 43rd Annual General Meeting (AGM) set for February 10, 2022 at the Victoria Inn in Brandon, as well as an overview of a series of proposed administration by-law amendments which will be considered at the AGM. Note: The ability to hold an in-person AGM is contingent upon the pandemic-related public health orders in effect at the time and virtual access to the meeting will also be an option. Resolutions Process Because of the change in the format of MBP’s fall 2021 district meetings due to the pandemic, MBP’s board of directors is accepting in writing suggested resolutions for potential debate at its 43rd AGM. If the resolution is deemed to be in order by MBP’s Resolutions Committee it will be considered for debate at the AGM. In consultation with the resolution’s author, proposed resolutions may be subject to editing by MBP for clarity and to ensure consistency of formatting across all resolutions. The sample resolution form can be found on this page of Cattle Country. Please note: if the resolution covers off matters on which MBP is already conducting advocacy work, it may be deemed to be redundant and not taken forward for debate so as to ensure there is

time to debate resolutions on emerging matters. As well, it is also important that proposed resolutions deal with something that is potentially achievable and clearly state the actions you are asking MBP to consider taking. Send the proposed resolution (along with your contact information) to info@mbbeef.ca to the attention of General Manager Carson Callum and Policy Analyst Maureen Cousins. Alternatively, you may fax it to 1-204774-3264 or mail it to 220-530 Century Street, Winnipeg MB R3H 0Y4. Proposed resolutions will be accepted for consideration until 9 a.m. Thursday, February 3, 2022. All resolutions accepted for debate will be posted on MBP’s website in advance of the AGM and will be included in the delegate information packages. Proposed By-law Amendments A series of proposed amendments to the Manitoba Cattle Producers Association’s Administration By-law No. 1/89 (operating as Manitoba Beef Producers) have been considered by the MBP board of directors and were shared with members at the fall 2021 in-person and virtual district meetings for initial feedback. The following motion was then put forward by the MBP board of directors at its November 9,

2021 board meeting: “Be it resolved that the membership of the Manitoba Cattle Producers Association (operating as Manitoba Beef Producers) supports the Manitoba Beef Producers Board of Directors’ proposals for modernization of the organization’s administration by-law as they were discussed at the fall 2021 district meetings and as published on MBP’s website prior to the 43rd MBP Annual General Meeting which is taking place on February 10, 2022.” One proposed by-law amendment involves an extension to the number of terms an MBP director may serve on the board of directors. Currently directors are allowed to serve a maximum of three consecutive two-year terms provided they are re-elected in their district after each two-year term ends. The proposed change would allow an interested and qualified director to serve one additional consecutive two-year term so long as they are re-elected in their district following the completion of their third term. The purpose of this proposed amendment is to allow MBP directors who are interested in potential leadership roles at national industry associations such

as the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association or others to have more time to become familiar with the workings of those organizations while they serve as MBP representatives to them. In turn, it could give these MBP director representatives the opportunity to advance through these organizations’ leadership processes, such as seeking positions on their executive committees. A second proposed administration by-law amendment would see an external appointments provision added to it. Nothing in the current administration by-law precludes MBP’s board of directors from appointing an eligible member to represent MBP at an external organization or committee, but MBP wishes to formalize this in its by-law as other provincial cattle associations have done. For example, the British Columbia Cattlemen’s Association by-law allows that board to “appoint or elect from among the Voting Members, persons to represent the Association on provincial, national and other organizations, or for other Board assignments including membership on standing or special committees, as the Board considers appropriate.”

MBP believes there is value in from time to time in appointing an eligible member to represent the association at an external organization or committee, particularly if they have a specific type of knowledge, skills or expertise which would maximize the value of that person’s input on behalf of the beef industry. The final set of administrative by-law amendments deal with the proposed realignment of certain districts due to municipal amalgamations which have occurred in Manitoba in recent years. Specifically, the Manitoba Beef Producers board of directors is recommending that the Rural Municipality of Riding Mountain West be moved to District 7 and that the rural municipalities of Oakview and North Cypress-Langford be moved to District 8. MBP members attend district meetings and vote for directors based on the municipality in which they live. The proposed amendments would also update the local government names listed in each of the 14 districts as a number of them have changed over time due to various municipal amalgamations. The complete de-

tails of all the proposed amendments will be posted on Manitoba Beef Producers’ website in the Annual General Meeting section. See www.mbbeef. ca for more information. Consider attending the 43rd MBP AGM to debate and vote on the resolutions and proposed bylaw amendments. As a reminder, voting on MBP resolutions is restricted to producers who are members in accordance with MBP’s bylaws. As per the Section 1(1) (b) of the bylaws, membership refers to “Every person who is determined by the Board of Directors to be actively engaged in the raising of cattle in Manitoba, and who pays all fees to the Association in the manner and in the amount imposed on sellers of cattle pursuant to regulations made by the Board of Directors from time to time.” What does this mean? It means that if you have requested a refund in the last 12 months you have not paid all fees to the association as set out by the regulations and are not considered a member in good standing. We look forward to your participation and ask that you register in advance for the 43rd AGM to assist us in making the arrangements for it.

Resolutions Suggestion Form for 43rd Manitoba Beef Producers AGM Because of the change in the format of MBP’s fall 2021 district meetings due to the COVID-19 pandemic, MBP’s board of directors is now accepting in writing suggested resolutions for potential debate at its 43rd Annual General Meeting set for February 10, 2022. If the resolution is deemed to be in order by MBP’s Resolutions Committee it will be considered for debate at the AGM. In consultation with the resolution’s author, proposed resolutions may be subject to editing by MBP for clarity and to ensure consistency of formatting across all resolutions.

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Please note: if the resolution covers off matters on which MBP is already conducting advocacy work, it may be deemed to be redundant and not taken forward for debate so as to ensure there is time to debate resolutions on emerging matters. As well, it is also important that proposed resolutions deal with something that is potentially achievable and clearly state the actions you are asking MBP to consider taking. The sample resolution format is below and two examples are on the second page. Send the proposed resolution (along with your contact information) to info@mbbeef.ca to the attention of General Manager Carson Callum and Policy Analyst Maureen Cousins. Alternatively, you may fax it to 1-204-774-3264 or mail it to 220-530 Century Street, Winnipeg MB R3H 0Y4. They will be accepted for consideration until 9 a.m. Thursday, February 3, 2022. All resolutions for debate will be posted on MBP’s website as well.

Whereas

Whereas

Be it resolved to recommend that Manitoba Beef Producers

Your name:

www.ediecreekangus.com

Address: (include MBP District number if known) Phone Number:

Email Address:

www.mbbeef.ca


December 2021 CATTLE COUNTRY

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Digitizing the consumer beef experience BY ANGELA LOVELL Imagine standing in front of the meat counter and scanning a QR code with your smartphone on a new cut of beef you are considering buying, but have no idea how to cook. Instantaneously, you can see everything you need to know about that cut, including nutritional information, safe handling instructions and recipes, and can even locate and add all the additional ingredients you need to make the recipe to your basket. That’s the vision of Canada Beef ’s new Canadian Beef Information Gateway, currently in development in association with major national retailers like Loblaw and Sobeys. The pandemic has changed the way that consumers browse, shop and purchase food. With more Canadians preparing food at home for their families, Canada Beef identified an opportunity to improve the consumer’s beef experience when it noticed that recipe searches on its website had increased 167 per cent since March 2020. After conducting consumer research, Canada Beef discovered that the average Canadian shopper, who purchases beef at least once a week, was interested in being able to scan a QR code to get information about things like nutrition, quality and grading, cooking methods, food safety tips and to watch recipe videos. “We know customer experience is key, so we worked to create what we call a digital ecosystem of consumer information to simplify selection, preparation and enjoyment of a wider variety of beef cuts,” said Canada Beef President,

Michael Young, in a presentation to the virtual Canadian Beef Industry Conference in August. “Our goal is to sell more Canadian beef more often, and not just in volume, we want to see an increase in product assortment, with more cuts more often from larger parts of the animal.” A huge undertaking Creating the Gateway has been a huge undertaking, involving retrofitting the Canadian Beef Centre of Excellence into a digital production studio, and assembling a team of seven staff and 13 contractors who have already created 192 recipes, nutritional analyses and recipes for the Gateway. There have been many challenges along the way, the first being that every cut of beef has to be scannable in order the access the Gateway’s content. The team quickly realized there are many different scanning journeys to get barcodes or QR codes in front of consumers, so they had to come up with a unique solution. Customers scan a single QR code, and after answering a question that pops up on their phone, they scan the existing barcode on every package of beef in the meat counter and access the Gateway. Another challenge is how to get the access codes in front of the consumer in the key stages of the decision and buying process during meal planning prior to shopping, at the point of purchase and during meal preparation at home. Canada Beef is working with retailers to design and support them in adapting their systems to include QR codes on advertisements, digital flyers, social media, in-store price tags, shelf talkers and

Scan this QR code using the camera on a smartphone or tablet in order to view the video.

danglers. “It’s important that we make it as easy as possible for consumers to explore and get into the Gateway,” Young said. The Gateway has been rolled out in a trial phase with Loblaw and Sobey’s but other retailers are definitely interested in the system, which currently includes content for 25 of the most popular cuts of meat, with lots more to follow, including seasonal and ethnic recipes and concepts, and videos on slice and save programs, where retailers offer more value through the option to buy larger, bulk cuts of meat. “This method of purchasing is becoming more popular; however, customers have the challenge of how to process that cut of meat at home,” Young said. “Slice and save videos are an excellent way to promote the use of this.” Promoting new ways to enjoy beef The Gateway will offer informa-

tion on innovative cuts that consumers may not be familiar with. “We have learned from working in the export marketplace that there are many things you can do with Canadian beef and we plan on bringing a lot of new cuts and cooking methods to the Gateway,” Young said. Retailers are keen to get onboard with the Gateway, especially as it has been developed to be customizable to their store’s unique branding and logos that their customers will see when they scan items in their stores, and they can add other items that are important to differentiate them from their competitors. “Through this technology (retailers) can communicate with consumers, and customize, own and create a gateway that truly is theirs, knowing that it’s our information that we are going to be sharing with them about buying more Canadian beef,” Young said. Down the road, the Gateway will include information about frozen food and prepared beef foods and the team is looking at how it can be adapted to serve the food service industry as well. A French-language Gateway will also be developed in the future. “The Gateway is a game changer for how we can improve the customer experience and we are grateful for the support from producers, the national checkoff group, and the team that brought it together,” Young said. “You are going to hear more about this and there is much more to come down the pipe.”

Intake open for Ag Action Manitoba – Assurance: Beneficial Management Practice activities The intake period for Ag Action Manitoba – Assurance: Beneficial Management Practice activities opened November 8 and closes on December 10, 2021 for projects that will occur in 2022/23. This intake period includes applications for BMP 503 ‒ Managing Livestock Access to Riparian Areas. Under BMP 503 the following costs are eligible: water source development in relation to wells and dugouts, alternative watering system equipment,

permanent fencing to restrict livestock access to surface water and dugouts, permanent pipeline development, and, watering system components. For this BMP there is a cost share ratio of 50:50 and a funding cap of $10,000 per application. Applicants may submit more than one application. Ineligible costs under BMP 503 include: maintenance and operation expenses; perimeter fencing for upland grazing management; expenses related to remov-

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ing or replacing existing fences or water infrastructure, such as storage tanks or water troughs; portable livestock corral panels; portable gas/ diesel powered water pumps, generators, water meters; materials and construction costs for pump houses; aeration systems for dugouts, etc.; above ground pipelines; hauling or pumping of water to fill empty dugouts; and, temporary set up of watering systems. Examples of other BMPs eligible for costshared funding include:

Resource Management Planning, Establishment of a Cover Crop, Increasing Frequency of Perennials in Annual Rotations, Perennial Cover for Sensitive Lands, Improved Pasture and Forage Quality, Intercropping, Farmyard Runoff Control, Relocation of Confined Livestock Areas, and others. An Environmental Farm Plan (EFP) Statement of Competition is not required at time of application, however it is required at time of claim, if approved. EFP

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Workshops are ongoing through the fall and winter. Dates and locations are posted at www.ManitobaEFP.ca. Government support cannot exceed 25 or 50 per cent of eligible expenses, depending on project type, with varying funding caps from $10,000 to $100,000. The total maximum amount payable to one farm operation is $60,000 (not including BMP: Barn Odour Reduction and BMP: Managing Livestock Access to Riparian Areas) over the term of

the Ag Action Manitoba program. Farmers may apply and receive funding for more than one BMP over the term of Ag Action Manitoba. Only one application per BMP on the same parcel of land and/or for a single project where there may be common components across multiple applications, will be eligible for funding. For more details see https://www.manitoba.ca/agriculture/ environment/environmental-farm-plan/assurance-bmp.html

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204-558-4502 www.mbbeef.ca


6

CATTLE COUNTRY December 2021

StockTalk Q&A Feature Brought to you by Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development WRAY WHITMORE

Livestock Specialist, Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development wray.whitmore@gov.mb.ca

On April 1 of this year, I began a new job as a livestock specialist, focused on predation management, with Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development (ARD). Having worked in livestock production for much of my career, it is a specific area of interest to me. My work experience includes 20 years as a provincial sheep specialist and in that job, predation management was critical. It is important to understand when and where predation attacks occur to get an understanding of the predator involved. It can be a valuable exercise to analyze a predation attack for prevention in the future and this can come from either cattle or sheep. The Livestock Predation Protection Working Group (LPPWG) was formed in April 2013. It is co-chaired by the Manitoba Beef Producers (MBP) and ARD, and further supported by members representing the Manitoba Sheep Association, the Manitoba Trappers Association (MTA), Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation (MASC), and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC). The group works cooperatively towards ensuring that Agro-Manitoba provides a vibrant, diverse, economically, and ecologically sustainable landscape, where there is balance be-

tween people, animals and the environment. The LPPWG has identified the broad goal of minimizing predator-livestock conflicts and the financial burden that typically falls on producers, while also maintaining healthy wild predator populations. It serves as a forum for discussion on potential negative interactions within the system and is working to develop an inclusive Livestock Predation Protection Management Strategy. In Manitoba, the distribution of wolf predation of livestock is distinct from that of coyotes. Wolves tend to be along the forest-agricultural fringe, whereas coyotes tend to be more widely dispersed. See Figures 1 and 2 for a 2017 summary. Sheep predation losses to both coyotes and wolves increases in June, peaking in August/September and starts to decline in November. This timeframe coincides with when a pair of coyotes are raising pups, food is required for nursing, and then the adults teach pups how to hunt. Wolf kills in sheep start to increase in June and peak in July. Cattle losses to wolves increase through May – July, when vulnerable young cattle are often dispersed in remote fields with limited human presence and remains stable or declines slightly until No-

Wolf Predation Losses

µ

(2017) Figure 1

Value by Municipality ($) > 50,000 25,001 - 50,000 5,001 - 25,000 Kelsey

1 - 5,000 none

MinitonasBowsman

Swan Valley West

Mountain

Ethelbert Roblin

Gilbert Plains Grandview

Mossey River

Grahamdale Dauphin Lakeshore

Riding Mountain West RussellBinscarth

McCreary

Rossburn Harrison Park

Prairie View Oakview

MintoOdanah

Riverdale

WallaceWoodworth

Elton

North CypressLangford

GlenboroSouth OaklandCypress Wawanesa

SourisGlenwood

Two Borders

BrendaWaskada

BoissevainMorton

DeloraineWinchester

Author: Les Mitchell Source: Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation data

vember. Successful predator prevention often results from implementing

KillarneyTurtle Mtn

0

Victoria

25

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Roland

Stanley

100 Kilometers

a combination of different beneficial management techniques. Good herd or flock management is likely

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DIRECTIONS: 17 miles east of Brandon on Highway #1 and a half mile south on Highway #351

Pembina

Louise

50

Macdonald

East St Paul Springfield

Ste. Anne

Ritchot

Dufferin Thompson

CartwrightRoblin

Brokenhead Whitemouth

Tache

Grey

Lorne

Lac Du Bonnet

West St. Paul

St. Francis Rosser Xavier

Cartier Headingley

NorfolkTreherne

Argyle

Prairie Lakes

Grassland

St. Clements

Rockwood

North Norfolk

Alexander

St. Andrews

St. Laurent

Portage La Prairie

Cornwallis Sifton

Gimli

Woodlands

Whitehead Pipestone

Armstrong

Coldwell

WestlakeGladstone

Rosedale Hamiota

BifrostRiverton

Fisher

Alonsa

GlenellaLansdowne

ClanwilliamErickson

Yellowhead ElliceArchie

West Interlake

Ste. Rose

Morris Montcalm

Rhineland

Reynolds

Hanover La Desalaberry Broquerie

EmersonFranklin

Piney Stuartburn

1:2,200,000

the most effective method for reducing the potential for attacks from common predators. Strategies that include regular monitoring of your livestock are critical. A frequent human presence goes a long way in preventing problems. Livestock guardian animals can be very effective in mitigating predation issues, particularly when well-trained livestock guardian dogs are used. There are reports that some livestock guardian dog breeds (e.g., Kangal) can be effective in repelling wolves. Calving or lambing yards close to home allows for more observation, and greater ease of increased human presence, which is desirable. Proper disposal of deadstock and afterbirth is an important step in minimizing the attraction of predators. Fencing can also play a significant role in a predation prevention program. Predator exclusion fencing specifications can be found online in resource guides available from the Living with Wildlife Foundation (www.lwwf.org). Keep in mind, however, that not all coyotes

kill livestock. I have heard from producers that they have observed coyotes walk through a herd or flock, hunting mice and insects, without paying any attention to the livestock. Cattle production frequently occurs in more remote areas with bush and that can be a problem if predators are in the area. This is especially true for areas that support the habitat of wolves, bears or cougars. There is evidence that wolves prefer wildlife prey animals (e.g. deer, elk or moose) but this not always the case. In dealing with predators, compromised or very young animals are more likely targets, but there are cases where it appears that merely being in the wrong place at the wrong time seems to have determined which animal was taken. Livestock Predation Prevention Pilot Project (LPPPP) On Feb. 7, 2020, ARD announced $300,000 in funding for a three-year applied Livestock Predation Prevention Pilot Project (LPPPP). Page 7 


December 2021 CATTLE COUNTRY

7

Project aims to reduce predation losses  Page 6 The project will test and validate methods of reducing predation of cattle and sheep in areas of the province with historically high predation losses and emerging problem areas. The LPPPP aims to reduce wildlife predation on livestock using different mitigation strategies and barrier techniques (first year – $100,000 in 2020-21). MBP has hired Ray Bittner as the project coordinator to oversee the development and delivery of the project. As the lead, Ray is developing project agreements and distributing risk management tools to selected producers throughout Manitoba. You may have already seen or heard information on this program in previous issues either of Cattle Country or at the 2021 MBP virtual Annual General Meeting where it was highlighted. Livestock Predation Losses and Compensation Manitoba provided $13.4 million in compensation between 2007 and 2020 to farmers through the Wildlife Damage Compensation Program. This program is administered by MASC and provides compensation to affected livestock producers at a rate of 90 per cent for confirmed predator kills, and 50 per cent for probable kills. The minimum compensation for young animals has recently increased to reflect the value of the livestock at typical marketing, rather than at the time of kill. Predators, such as coyotes, black bears, foxes and wolves, are managed species under The Wildlife Act. They can be hunted or trapped with a valid hunting or trapping licence and during specific seasons. Some predators can be killed to protect property (including livestock) without a licence. Compensation for livestock injured

or killed by bears, coyotes, cougars, foxes and wolves is also available from MASC. Domestic and feral dogs are not considered wildlife under The Wildlife Act and as such, compensation for damages of loss from their attacks are not considered by the program. When a predator kill is discovered, it is important to secure the site by covering the kill (e.g., tarp, or preferably, a loader bucket) to prevent further scavenging. Take many pictures and report the loss to MASC as soon as possible. It could help to call a Manitoba Conservation officer, as well, so they are made aware of the problem, particularly if you are experiencing wild predator impacts that are not compensated by MASC. For further details on damage compensation, livestock producers should contact the nearest MASC office, or go to the MASC website at www. masc.mb.ca/masc.nsf/program_wildlife_damage_ compensation.html The percentage of losses in Manitoba from 2013 – 2019 by predators are as follows: 56 per cent coyote, 26 per cent wolf, 17 per cent black bear and one per cent cougar. As indicated here, coyotes cause more than double the losses on all livestock types than any other predator. Problem Predator Removal Program Since 2007, Manitoba has funded the Problem Predator Removal Program, which is administered by ARD, and delivered by the MTA through a fee-for-service agreement. Manitoba has signed a three-year agreement (2021/22 to 2023/24) with the MTA for professional trappers to remove problem predators (e.g., wolf, coyote or fox) that are damaging livestock operations. The program receives an average of about 50 ser-

Coyote Predation Losses

µ

(2017) Figure 2

Value by Municipality ($) > 50,000 25,001 - 50,000 5,001 - 25,000 Kelsey

1 - 5,000 none

MinitonasBowsman

Swan Valley West

Mountain

Ethelbert Roblin

Gilbert Plains Grandview

Mossey River

Grahamdale Dauphin Lakeshore

Riding Mountain West RussellBinscarth

McCreary

Rossburn Harrison Park

Prairie View

Alonsa

Oakview

MintoOdanah

Riverdale

WallaceWoodworth

Elton

North CypressLangford

GlenboroSouth OaklandCypress Wawanesa

SourisGlenwood

Two Borders

BrendaWaskada

BoissevainMorton

DeloraineWinchester

Author: Les Mitchell Source: Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation data

vice requests per year and has removed over 2,400 problem predators since it began. Over the last five years, an annual average of nine requests for service were to address incidents of wolf depredation of cattle and resulted in an average of 21 wolves removed. While the risk of predation impacts to livestock can be reduced and minimized, some level of risk will always exist, because society has determined it

Argyle

Prairie Lakes

Grassland

0

KillarneyTurtle Mtn

25

Victoria

50

Louise

Macdonald

Ritchot

Dufferin

Lorne

Pembina

Roland

values the presence of wild predators in Manitoba. Keep in mind that predators also provide many benefits to livestock operations, particularly because they prey upon a number of species that can negatively impact livestock operations (e.g., beavers, ground squirrels, elk, deer). Remember to observe your livestock on a regular basis so you can see changes that indicate a predator issue early. Good

Morris Montcalm

Rhineland

Stanley

100 Kilometers

East St Paul Springfield

Whitemouth

Tache

Grey

Thompson

CartwrightRoblin

Brokenhead West St. Paul

St. Francis Rosser Xavier

Cartier Headingley

NorfolkTreherne

Lac Du Bonnet

St. Clements

Rockwood

North Norfolk

Alexander

St. Andrews

St. Laurent

Portage La Prairie

Cornwallis Sifton

Gimli

Woodlands

Whitehead Pipestone

Armstrong

Coldwell

WestlakeGladstone

Rosedale Hamiota

BifrostRiverton

Fisher

GlenellaLansdowne

ClanwilliamErickson

Yellowhead ElliceArchie

West Interlake

Ste. Rose

Ste. Anne

Reynolds

Hanover La Desalaberry Broquerie

EmersonFranklin

Piney Stuartburn

1:2,200,000

managers recognize an agitated cow off by herself or a group of cattle that are worked up and spooked for no obvious reason. If you start having predator kills, make the call to MASC and attempt any of the outlined strategies, at your earliest ability, to try to minimize the possibility of continued

losses. Even better, take action before you experience losses to help protect your bottom line. Finding the balance between people, animals and the environment is an important and challenging endeavor. A multidimensional approach can help to protect your livestock operation.

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8

CATTLE COUNTRY December 2021

Year-end market wrap, a black swan, and hope for 2022 As we close out 2021, the fall cattle run is all but over, and it turned out surprisingly better than we could have hoped for. Prices started out close to the previous fall but did fall back when the bigger volume sales appeared in November. Large feed inventories in Ontario created stronger demand for feeder cattle that resulted in higher cattle prices in Manitoba than further west. Good weather lasted until after Remembrance Day, which allowed producers to take advantage of better than average grazing conditions to put more pounds on the calves prior to sale. Even with the snow cover, many producers left their cows out, hoping to shorten the feeding season and stretch their winter feed supplies. The markets reported that between 20% and 30% of their

spring clientele marketed their calves this fall. This should result in a shortage of feeder cattle for the spring market. Feed grain prices did not drop as expected when the combines hit the fields. Barley prices stayed north of $8.00 per bushel all fall, with some reports of over $11.00 in Alberta. Feedlots across western Canada have been importing American corn and by-products used for cattle feed all fall. The price of American corn and the exchange rate on the Canadian dollar will be big influencers on how the feeder cattle market plays out in the spring. As we reach early December, another “black swan” is hovering over the Canadian cattle industry. A potential strike at the Cargill plant in High River, Alberta threatens to disrupt the

RICK WRIGHT The Bottom Line cattle industry. The plant at High River processes approximately 40% of the beef in Canada, running five to six days per week. The United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), which represents the workers, sees the packing industry making huge profits on every animal they harvest and process, and they want a piece of the pie. The timing of the proposed strike benefits the union in their negotiation strategy. As of the middle of November, cash sales of fed cattle were four to five weeks

H TH

E

ahead of delivery, creating a backlog at the feedlots. On the south side of the border, packers were short on market-ready cattle and were picking the cattle up within three to five days of purchase. The short supplies in the south also created stronger prices for American feeders. Prices for fed cattle finally broke the $1.30 per pound live barrier, with reports of as high as $1.34 by November 20. Packers north of the border held prices steady, and even on selected days refused to bid on market-ready fed cattle. They supplemented the harvest with the over-abundance of cows being liquidated in Alberta and Saskatchewan. The union picked the perfect time to strike; large volumes of available cattle, strong beef demand, both for domestic use and export, creating huge profits for the packers and wholesalers. The other factor is that there is not a long line of workers looking for jobs in the meat processing industry; there is an acute shortage of skilled workers, with many of the positions filled by new Canadians and temporary foreign workers.

🍁🍁

The union will win, and those costs will pass on to the consumer and/or will be taken off the price paid to producers. Once Cargill and UFCW settle, the workers at the other plants will want the same or more! Do your friends a favour and tell them to stock up on beef. They may think the price is high now but wait until spring and see what happens. The prices you now see are based on beef bought at $2.60 and $2.80 delivered to the plant or on the rail, depending on where you live. Some feeders were lucky enough to sell cattle for April at $3.02 to $3.06. This can’t help but translate into higher beef prices at the meat counter. Consumers are starting to push back on the price point of beef and some other food items. Beef prices will stay high as long as the export demand continues. The perfect solution would be to have another player in the packing game in Canada. Sorry to say folks; that is not going to happen. There are no major companies left that are willing to come to Canada and set up shop. Cargill and JBS are the majority players in the global protein market, and they are firmly entrenched in Canada. The others in the industry don’t like the Canadian labour regulations, the limited supply of cattle and infrastructure of the Canadian cattle industry, and the lack of

workers. The fact is that anyone can build a plant and harvest cattle, but without the marketing network to sell the meat, you are in big trouble. Small independent plants all over North America have found that out the hard way, many times over since BSE. To end the year, some good news! I firmly believe that moving forward, the liquidation of the cattle numbers on both sides of the border should lead to better times for the cattle industry, especially the primary cow-calf producers. It has been a tough year, especially with the drought and COVID-19. For those of you in the cattle industry who have fought through and have been able to keep the majority of your cows, thumbs up to you, and I sincerely hope you are rewarded for your resilience, and in some cases, your creativity in finding feed and pasture. Canada produces some of the best and safest beef in the world; you are part of the production chain, and we need those cows producing those calves year after year. As we put 2021 behind us, and we hope for rain to start the crops for next year, we need to figure out a solution to make sure that everyone in the supply chain gets a fair share for their product so that we can grow and become more sustainable in the future. Not an easy task. Until next year, Rick

Applications due December 3. Visit https://mbbeef.ca/our-news/theenvironmental-stewardship-award-tesa/ for the application package.

www.mbbeef.ca


December 2021 CATTLE COUNTRY

9

Animal protein in healthy diets making every bite count BY PETER FROHLICH

National Centre for Livestock and the Environment, University of Manitoba

Lean meats, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy products, beans, lentils, nuts and seeds are all important to healthy eating according to the Canadian Food Guide. These protein-rich foods each have unique nutritional characteristics. During a recent University of Manitoba Special Seminar organized by the National Centre for Livestock and the Environment and the Department of Animal Science, Dr. Teresa Davis used sound scientific data to support a discussion on the nutritional importance of animal protein in the diet. Dr. Davis is a professor of pediatrics with the United States Department of Agriculture/Agriculture Research Service, Children’s Nutritional Research Center at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. Proteins are the building blocks of life and are involved in almost every function inside our bodies including building muscles, contributing to bone health and more. Proteins are made up of two types of amino acids, non-essential and essential. Our bodies can produce the non-essential amino acids but we cannot produce any of the essential amino acids. As a result, we need to find these in our diet. All proteins are not created equal According to Davis, proteins derived from animal products are also known as complete high-quality proteins and contain all the essential amino acids. Most plant proteins lack one or more of the essential amino acids. As a bonus, animal sourced foods are packed with an abundance of nutrients including iron, zinc, vitamin B12, selenium, phosphorous and others. According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the body absorbs 2 to 3 times more iron from animal than from plant sources. Increasing iron in the diet helps to alleviate anemia and other health conditions related to iron deficiency, specifically in women, infants and young children. Healthy body weight Making sure that we fuel our bodies with the correct amounts of calories can be a challenge. In developed countries like Canada and the US, excess caloric intake is associated with obesity and poor health. Approximately one third of adults and children in the United States are overweight or obese. Eighty per cent of the obese children will remain obese as adults and will be at a greater risk for developing cardiovascular disease, diabetes, osteoporosis and cancer. Canada is not far behind this trend. Davis says that consumption of lean meat is associated with fewer calories in the diet and is part of the solution to battling obesity. Three ounces of lean beef provides half of the daily requirement for protein but only 10 per cent of calories and fat. Exercise is another tool used to battle obesity. Resistance exercise, also called strength training, promotes muscle protein synthesis and muscle mass. Davis says that eating animal protein enhances the positive impact that resistance exercise has on building muscle. Important at any age In infants and older children, consumption of meat and dairy products promotes growth. Davis points out that increased consumption of cow’s milk by kids compared to milk substitutes improves body protein balance while promoting lean muscle tissue mass and greater height in young children. Currently 20 per cent of our population is 65 and over. By 2050 this figure will grow to 25 per cent. As we age, our bodies require more protein and extra nutritional assistance to stay strong and healthy. According to Davis, consumption of animal protein foods has a positive effect on preserving skeletal and muscle mass while improving function, performance and independence in older adults. Malnutrition is a major health crisis worldwide with 45 per cent of child deaths resulting from poor nutrition. Davis highlighted research suggesting that

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In infants and older children, consumption of meat and dairy products promotes growth. Davis points out that increased consumption of cow’s milk by kids compared to milk substitutes improves body protein balance while promoting lean muscle tissue mass and greater height in young children. just small amounts of protein sourced from animal products are superior to plant-sourced protein foods in helping to fight the effects of malnutrition. Is there a negative side to the story of animal proteins? Davis explores an alternative view on animalbased proteins. One message in the media is that increased consumption of meat is associated with a 14 per cent increased risk of colorectal cancer. Causal effects in studies on chronic disease are difficult to measure, primarily because numerous dietary and lifestyle choices are also contributing to the cause of the chronic illness. To put this figure into perspective, consider a greater than 1000 per cent increased risk for lung cancer from smoking cigarettes. Davis states that as a result of many research studies and approximately 1.5 million participants, it was concluded that there is a low to very low certainty of evidence for adverse health outcomes of consuming red and processed meats. During the seminar and question period Dr. Davis provided the narrative, heavily reinforced by scientific evidence, that supported the nutritional benefits of animal sourced foods. Dr. Davis emphasized that it is important to share information and scientific data with public and governments to ensure there is

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no misinformation regarding the key role of animal sourced foods in a healthy diet. At the end of the day, both US and Canadian dietary guidelines agree on consuming nutrient dense foods to maintain a healthy diet, and animal-sourced foods are truly nutrient dense. We as consumers in developed countries have the privilege to choose the foods we eat. Let’s think about nutritional value, scientific evidence, and make every bite count. Peter Frohlich (Peter.Frohlich@umanitoba.ca) is the Research Development Coordinator with the National Centre for Livestock and the Environment at the University of Manitoba. RED ANGUS | BLACK ANGUS | SIMMENTAL

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10 CATTLE COUNTRY December 2021

Cover cropping opportunities and challenges in livestock production BY: DR. MARY-JANE ORR

MBFI General Manager

In a livestock production system, adding cover cropping practices into your operational planning can be a risk management tool to hedge your bets in a growing season for forage production. By definition, a cover crop is grown to protect and enrich the soil where conventionally there would be bare soil. Targeted bare soil can be the timeframes of early spring or in the fall following harvest of cash crop production (i.e. the shoulder seasons), or the bare soil to be covered may be between the rows of the primary crop, or may be part of a rotation as a full season cover. From a management perspective purposefully increasing plant productivity outside of the conventional growing season for grain crops, annual forage greenfeed, or silage production provides flexibility in adding additional grazing days. Having plants in place to take advantage of unseasonal weather patterns can have a significant impact on increasing grazing capacity and buffering against losses in detrimental weather on primary crop production. The main challenges we have faced at Manitoba Beef & Forage Initiatives (MBFI) is the issue of weed control in diverse full season cover crops and the potential for nitrate toxicity in plants that accumulate nitrates under stress events. At MBFI in 2021 we were impressed by the outcomes of several scenarios that worked well in weathering the dry spring

and summer conditions to jump start with the late August to September precipitation. On 8 acres at the Brookdale Farm forage oats (35lbs/acre, Haymaker, Zeghers Seeds), fava beans (45lbs/acre, Snowbird, Jeffries Seeds), forage peas (30lbs/ acre, 4010, Zeghers Seeds), and Italian ryegrass (7lbs/acre, Jeanne, DLF Pickseed) were no-till seeded at the end of May. No additional fertilizer was applied due to the field having adequate soil test residual fertility from the previous year’s corn grazing. The primary goal of the field was for greenfeed production of the forage oats, the fava beans and forage peas were added for nitrogen fixation and to improve feed quality, and the Italian rye grass was added for regrowth potential following harvest. The field was cut, baled, and bales removed for winter feed supply in early August yielding 30 bales representing 4,040 lbs of forage per acre. The harvested feed test came in at 11% dry matter crude protein, 51% total digestible nutrients, relative feed value of 77, and total nitrates of 0.49%. According to the North Dakota State University extension publication V839 revised Feb.2020, nitrates (Total NO3%) in the range of 0.44 to 0.66 is considered safe for nonpregnant livestock and limited to 50% of ration dry matter for pregnant cows. The following favorable weather led to promising regrowth in the field from the Jeanne Italian ryegrass, Haymaker oats, and Snowbird fava beans. In mid-October 82.5 animal units (49 cow-calf pairs) grazed the 8-acre field for an added 5 days

representing approximately an additional 1,300 lbs/acre of forage production. At the Johnson Farm, on 73 acres barley (72lbs/acre, Maverick, Secan), chickling vetch (5lbs/acre, Imperial Seed), and Italian ryegrass (7lbs/acre, Jeanne, DLF Pickseed) were no-till seeded at the end of May. Again, the primary goal was to grow greenfeed with an intercrop for added quality and regrowth potential into the fall. The Johnson farm site is challenged with sandy loam soil being more prone to poor performance in dry growing conditions, and unfortunately the chickling vetch did not establish. When the field was cut and left in small bales for in-field grazing, it yielded just under 2,000 lbs/ acre and no understory of intercrop was present. The feed quality tested at 13% dry matter crude protein, 63% total digestible nutrients, relative feed value of 105, and total nitrates of 0.74%. Forage test nitrates (Total NO3%) in the range of 0.66 to 0.88 is recommended to be limited to 50% of ration dry matter for all animals. The surprise of the season was the response of the intercropped Jeanne Italian ryegrass regrowth following the Maverick barley harvest. In mid-September, 159 animal units (85 cow-calf pairs) transitioned onto strip grazing the small bales and regrowth with supplemental feed provided to balance their intake. Over 35 days of grazing, the group demonstrated a strong grazing preference for the Italian ryegrass and the greenfeed bales were fully utilized. In addition to increasing forage pro-

duction capacity, cover crops are promoted for erosion control, improving fertility capture and cycling through uptake from soil during growth, fixation of nitrogen from legumes, and release for the next crop through decomposition. Increasing the seasonal coverage of plants growing and contributing to soil nutrient cycling of carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus grows the soil biology, increases soil organic matter, and ultimately improves the water infiltration and water holding capacity of the field. Cover crops as a tool to improve soil health translates to a longterm investment in the natural capital of your land. For more context on how cover crops are grown across the Canadian Prairies, you are encouraged to read the recent 2020 survey report produced by Callum Morrison and Dr. Yvonne Lawley in the Department of Plant Science at the University of Manitoba (https://umanitoba.ca/agricultural-food-sciences/make/ make-ag-food-resources#crops). A recording of the MBFI hosted webinar presentation on the report can be viewed at https://youtu.be/tyjBxd4J4iY. A Facebook group (www.facebook. com/groups/prairiecovercrop) has also been created with an emphasis for interested producers from Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta to join and discuss their experiences with cover crops. For more information, MBFI can be reached at 204-761-3300 or at information@mbfi.ca

Reminder: Producers can apply for drought assistance Manitoba beef producers affected by the drought conditions are reminded that they may be able to receive assistance via two programs under the AgriRecovery framework aimed at helping with the extraordinary costs incurred for feed and transportation. Under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, the Livestock Feed and Transportation Drought Assistance program will help producers purchase and test feed for livestock to maintain their breeding herds including transport-

ing purchased feed from distant locations. The Livestock Transportation Drought Assistance program will offer assistance to help offset freight expenses associated with moving livestock to alternative feed supply areas. Eligible animals under the Livestock Feed and Transportation Drought Assistance program are breeding animals of beef and dairy cattle, horses raised for pregnant mare urine (PMU), sheep, goats and bison. Producers must be supporting a minimum of 10 animals to qualify

for assistance and the program covers feed and feed transportation expenses between June 1, 2021, and March 15, 2022. Feed must have been delivered from a supplier at least 40 kilometres away and assistance is available for hauling feed for up to a maximum oneway distance of 600 km. Eligible feed purchases are those made between June 1, 2021, and March 15, 2022. The Livestock Transportation program offers help for producers with extraordinary costs to transport breeding animals of

beef cattle, sheep and goats to alternate locations to feed, up to 1,000 km. This program does not cover moving animals to market or sale. Manitoba is also in the process of designing a cowherd-rebuilding program under the Canada-Manitoba AgriRecovery Drought Assistance framework to help livestock producers forced to sell breeding stock due to limited feedstock in 2021 with the goal to rebuild their herds starting in 2022. At the time Cattle Country was going to print the details of this program

were being developed. For more detailed program information, producers can contact their Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development Service Centre, call the department toll-free at 1-84-GROW-MB-AG (1-844-769-6224) or go to www.manitoba.ca/agriculture. Applications are available at https://www. gov.mb.ca/agriculture/ livestock/agrirecoveryfeed-purchase-transportassistance.html and must include receipts for feed purchases and transporta-

tion.

A video with more information about these initiatives is available at http s : / / w w w. youtub e. com/playlist?list=PLD7O iKfhYvB8p4bxsvxcT_hxQpCL1Ykea Specific tools and resources for managing in dry conditions are available at www.manitoba.ca/agriculture/dry.html. Manitobans can stay up to date on Manitoba’s agricultural programs and services by following @ MBGovAg on Twitter https://twitter.com/MBGovAg.

NEW Due Dat e DEC 3 Visit mbbeef.ca/producers for information

MHHC pays landowners to conserve wildlife habitat on private lands. For more information call Tom Moran (204) 305-0276 or visit www.mhhc.mb.ca

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December 2021 CATTLE COUNTRY 11

The ins and outs of farm safety DR. TANYA ANDERSON, DVM

The Vet Corner

Agriculture is unique amongst industries whereby producers and their families live on the premise where they work. Kids grow up playing on the farm machinery and become very familiar with livestock and their care at a very young age. Only in agriculture does one see families with young children attending big farm shows or baby seats bolted in the tractor cab. A summer highlight for many city kids is a visit to Grandma and Grandpa’s farm. Agriculture ranks amongst the most hazardous indus-

Keep handling facilities in good repair and updated. Prior to processing day, fix the chute and ensure the headgate and swing gates work properly. Poorly maintained chutes add strain to shoulders and backs and can be the cause for finger sprains, cuts and amputations. Take care of your veterinarian - large animal vets are hard to replace! Fix the palpation cage and ensure cattle are not jumping around during calving or at pregnancy test time. Consider investing in a hydraulic squeeze system, especially if your

Photo by Melissa Atchison

tries - at least 170,000 agriculture workers are fatally injured every year. Cattle account for 59 per cent of animal related injuries, with death most commonly being due to crushing or blunt trauma to the chest. Farm safety must be prioritized.

operation is larger or you utilize the help of younger or smaller family members. Anyone can operate the hydraulic controls and securely securely-restrained do not cause injury. Research into facility design with attention to animal behaviour and wel-

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fare has resulted in much improved livestock handling systems. Large numbers of cattle can be rapidly and safely processed with Budbox or Temple Grandin style handling systems. Design pens and gate locations to work with, not against, natural animal behaviour. Is it necessary to get into the pen and, if it is, have a stick or cane for added protection and never work alone. Consider taking one of the many livestock handling courses available online - you are never too old to learn something new! At the end of a day of processing, what happens to the syringes and veterinary medications? Many end up on the kitchen counter, in the kitchen sink or in the fridge or cupboard alongside the food. Your local restaurant is not permitted to have hazards in the food preparation area and neither should you in your home. Have a separate fridge and storage area for your livestock medications and supplies. Clean up your equipment in a separate area or between meals when you can clean up and disinfect the kitchen area after you are finished. Wear gloves while handling medications. Many veterinary preparations are skin irritants at the very least and some can cause more serious health issues. Hormone prepara-

tions commonly used for synchronization programs or to induce calving are also used for human reproductive management. Women, especially those that are pregnant, should not be handling these medications without appropriate safety measures. Injection safety, for both animals and the injectors, should remain paramount. Prioritize syringe maintenance. Disposable syringes should be discarded at the end of the day or when dirty/broken. Remember that reusable syringes can only be effectively cleaned if they are taken apart. If you see a film, cloudiness or can scrape debris off the inside of your syringe, biofilm is present and can harbour bacteria that can lead to injection site infections and human health issues. Worn and improperlyfitted parts will affect dose accuracy, cause leakage and increase wear and tear on hands. Repair kits are available for many brands and individual parts are available through your local supply store or veterinarian. Regularly change needles - a new needle for every 10 animals needled and sooner if the needle bends, becomes dull or is dirty. Sharp clean needles and knives work properly and cause less injury and frustration. Eliminate the cutting at castration time

with a bander. Banding has been shown to be less stressful and painful with a lowered risk of complications when an appropriate sized band is chosen. Dehorn at birth or by using polled genetics to enhance animal welfare and avoid the physicality of animal

with your mouth, even if the needle is capped. Know what products you are using or better yet, have the packaging available so that if you accidentally vaccinate or medicate yourself, you can quickly and accurately inform medical staff as required. The best-case

Is it necessary to get into the pen and, if it is, have a stick or cane for added protection and never work alone. Consider taking one of the many livestock handling courses available online - you are never too old to learn something new! restraint and use of dehorning gougers and wire. Self-inflicted needle sticks can be serious. Be sure to restrain cattle properly with a neck extender and squeeze before injection and consider using Needle-eze extensions or Slapshots to avoid injury to your hand or syringe. Never put loaded syringes in your pockets or hold

scenario is injury from the needle and an irritating product. The worst-case scenario is death if you accidentally inject yourself with a tranquilizer or Micotil. Take your time, wear gloves, restrain adequately and practice good needle and product handling to ensure you, your family and your cattle remain injury free.

KEYSTONE KLASSIC SALE December 4th, 2021 | 7 PM Keystone Centre, Brandon MB Visit Bohrson.com to view the catalogue and for more information MB AG DAYS January 18-20, 2022 Come check out the Manitoba Angus booth and some great cattle on display at the barn!

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Wishing all a @ManitobaBeef

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Merry Christmas www.mbbeef.ca

MANITOBA ANGUS ASSOCIATION

P: 1-888-622-6487 | mandi.mbangus@gmail.com


12 CATTLE COUNTRY December 2021

New flavour combinations sure to impress your guests this holiday season BY: TAMARA SARKISIAN, RD 'Tis the season for celebrations and family gatherings! Not sure what to make for your next holiday party? Try something new this year and woo your guests with these delicious Armenian kebabs that will be featured on the next episode of Great Tastes of Manitoba on December 4 at 6:30pm (CTV Winnipeg). This dish would make for an amazing appetizer or can be served on a platter of rice and grilled veggies as part of the main entrée. Either way, you will be sure to please your guests, including the kids! We are using ground sirloin in this recipe for a tender, lean and flavourful cut of beef. If you cannot find ground sirloin, you can use lean ground beef which works

well too! The fresh herbs, garlic, onion and spices in this recipe really pack a whole ton of flavour into these kebabs and the hint of lemon really brightens up the flavours. We love kebabs because it can be a fun recipe to prepare with other members of your family, especially your kids. Such a perfect time to bond with your loved and create some great memories in the kitchen. This recipe is easy to cook in the oven, but if you prefer to keep it more traditional, you can try barbecuing the beef kebabs on skewers. If you have any leftovers, repurpose the kebabs the following day to make a delicious pita wrap topped with a yogurt garlic sauce, tomatoes, cucumber, hummus and fresh herbs. Such a great way to enjoy your leftovers and perfect for a quick lunch!

Armenian Kebab Ingredients: 1 lb (650 g) ground sirloin ½ onion, diced finely Three cloves garlic, minced ¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped Two sprigs fresh mint, chopped 1 tsp (5 mL) cumin ½ tsp (2.5 mL) oregano ½ tsp (2.5 mL) hot pepper (or chilli flakes) 2 Tbsp (30 mL) tomato paste ½ lemon, juiced ¼ cup oats, ground ½ Tbsp (8 mL) salt 2 tsp (10 mL) ground pepper One egg Directions: 1.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place aluminum foil on sheet pan and place a grill rack on top and set aside.

2.

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well with your hands (use gloves if preferred).

3.

Using a ¼ cup or ½ cup measuring cup, portion out meat into balls. Roll each ball into a log shape, about 3-4 inches in length.

4.

Bake in the oven for 25 min, then broil for 2-3 min.

5.

Serve with pita, rice, cucumber, and roasted vegetables.

Photo credit: Tamara Sarkisian

Merry Christmas The Board and staff at Manitoba Beef Producers wish you happy holidays and a joyful new year. The office will close on December 24 and re-open on January 4, 2022.

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