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Riding Herd “The greatest homage we can pay to truth is to use it.” – JAMES RUSSELL LOWELL

November 15, 2019 •

Volume 61 • No. 10

Beyond Leather BY LEE PITTS

When you lose, don’t lose the lesson.


f cave paintings and the Flintstones are to be believed, humanoids have been wearing the skins of animals to keep warm and for modesty ever since your kinfolk first walked out of the pond scum. Archeologists have found leather shoes that are 12,000 years old that are in better shape than many of those found in teenage closets today. In more recent times the preferred leather has always come from beef and dairy cattle but if pundits, markets, animal rightists and the millennial generation are to be believed, in the near future leather will be as popular as fur coats at a PETA convention. According to the fake news on TV and in urban newspapers, cattlemen not only have to worry about fake meat, now they have to worry about the most prized byproduct of cattle being replaced by fake leather. What’s next, fake footballs, basketballs, baseballs, fake rawhide chew bones for your dog, fake saddles, knock off bomber jackets, fake purses, fake wallets and wristwatch bands, and fake gloves? Will teenage pants fall even lower without leather belts? Perish the thought!

used to say, ‘We haven’t buried any hides yet.’ Now they can’t say that.” It seems we have entered an alternative retail universe where misguided eco-friendly consumers can choose between “ethical shoes” from a company called Terra Plana, Beyond Skin’s shoes made from fabric, Bourgeois Boheme footwear made from a mix of recycled products, a host of faux leather products made from petrochemicals, leather alternatives made from the same plastic that’s used in plastic pipe, and even some fake shoes made from fruit peels. I kid you not. An August story in the LA Times written by Lydia Mulvany and Denitsa Tsekova pretty much summed up the state of today’s leather industry in the title of their story called “America Is Obsessed with Beef. But

No Use For Hides, So Leather Prices Plunge.” I’ve written columns shorter than their title but that doesn’t mean they’re not right on the money. Remarkably, the urban reporters seem to have a good grasp on the subject. “U.S. consumers are eating more beef, more than they have in a decade,” they wrote. “But a byproduct of this carnivorous hankering is piling up, unloved and unwanted. Shoppers who once coveted leather jackets and shoes are instead scooping up cheaper, synthetic alternatives, reflecting a growing ambivalence toward this former staple of American closets. The glut of cowhides has caused prices to plummet, rendering many worthless. And just as the American love for meat has caught on around the globe, so too has the abandonment

of leather, from clothing to car seats. Hides are even starting to go to landfills. “Just five years ago, prices soared after a drought shrank the U.S. herd to a six-decade low. Leather outpriced itself, forcing shoe and clothing designers to cut the material from their products. Combine that with the rise of athleisure and the growing popularity of “vegan clothing,” and one can see why demand hasn’t come back,” wrote the reporters. “With piles of 100-pound cowhides accumulating all over the country, unused and unsold, leather makers are warning of a looming commercial disaster. Hides have often accounted for 50% of the value of the animal’s byproducts, and byproducts can be 10% of a steer’s value or more. Hides from cows, which are lower quality than those of steers, have fallen to only about 5% of the value of all byproducts — worth less than tongues and cheek meat. It’s not even 1% of the value of a live cow.” The writers quoted Lowell Carson, owner of the Double L Ranch in Altamont, N.Y., who’s been working in the meatpacking industry for more than 30 continued on page two

I Kid You Not


In the dog days of summer this year some meatpackers were getting as little as four dollars for the hide from a branded cow. Five years ago the same hide would fetch $81! According to Vera Dordick, CEO and publisher of Hidenet who addressed the slumping leather industry, “It’s not just the U.S. industry that’s suffering. It’s a worldwide crisis. Some people

Hemp & Cricket Burgers Are Coming for Beyond Meat More plant proteins set to hit menus as critics question peas BY ASHLEY ROBINSON & LYDIA MULVANY / BLOOMBERG


f you thought pea protein was weird, you might want to sit down for this. The next wave of alternative burgers could be made from hemp, mung beans or even crickets. As the plant boom attracts consumers and investors, the pea -- the preferred protein source for companies like Beyond Meat Inc. -- is facing some challengers. Critics say the legume isn’t the nutritional powerhouse that proponents claim it is, while others say alternatives could offer better taste. “Pea protein does have one weakness and that is that it’s not actually nutritionally equivalent to the protein that’s in dairy -- it’s not even equivalent to the protein that’s in soy,” said Johann Tergesen, chief executive officer of Burcon NutraScience, which is opening a plant-protein facility in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Peas also have a strong “bean-like” taste along with a chalky texture, he said. More Americans are being described as flexitarians, who buy both meat and alternatives, according to Meagan Nelson, an associate director at consumer researcher Nielsen. Veggie-burger sellers Beyond Meat and Impossible

Foods Inc. have landed deals with the likes of Denny’s Corp. and Burger King to take their products mainstream. Analysts at Jefferies estimate the alt-meat market could rise to $240 billion over the next two decades. While peas have captured headlines, producers of other crops are eager to get in on the action. Your next burger could end up being made from one of these burgeoning alternatives:

Canola Pea Craze Lures Second Processor to Manitoba to Open in 2020 Protein powder made from canola at Burcon NutraScience in Winnipeg on July 15, 2019. Canola is usually processed into vegetable oil or meal used in animal feed. But canola meal has a high protein content that can now make it attractive for human consumption as well. Vancouver, B.C.-based Burcon NutraScience has two market-ready canola proteins that are high in amino acids, methionine and cysteine, which other proteins like pea are low in. Other companies are also working on canola proteins, with Calgary-based Botaneco Inc. having recently received funding through the continued on page three


Takin’ It To The Streets


e’re all supposed to have gone global by now. If you want a new computer you phone a call center in India which passes on your order to a multinational corporation in China who uses chips made in Taiwan, monitors made in Korea, put together by Bangladesh workers in a plant in Singapore and shipped on Iranian flagged cargo ships to Long Beach where Mexican workers put it on a German owned DHL delivery van for delivery to your house in Little Italy or Chinatown. That’s the very definition of globalization and it’s basically the same blueprint for the food you eat. Melons will come from Mexico, citrus from Chile, avocados from foreign corporate farms, beef from a Brazilian owned firm with plants in Australia, and lamb freighted in from New Zealand. Your food will be delivered by an Uber chauffeur driving a Volvo made in Sweden because folks don’t have the time to shop any more. The American family farm is supposedly dead and if you aren’t the absolute low-cost producer you’d better be thinking about your exit strategy. If you produce anything that involves labor it’s already too late. Better learn to speak Chinese and make sure your passport is up to date. And this all makes perfect economic sense. So, how do you explain the burgeoning farmer’s market movement where busy people of all ages wander down streets filled with fruits, vegetables and even meat that was grown just down the road? Folks have made a party out of buying food and are going gaga over locally grown garbanzos and gouda. “Going to market” is the way people in third world countries shop but it’s not supposed to be this way in 21st century America. It’s certainly not convenient and yet there are a dozen towns in my county and every single one has a farmer’s market at least one day per week. And every one is busy. In an age gone goofy over globalism how do you explain that? Maybe it’s because people are tired of tasteless tomatoes, pithy oranges and hamburgers put together by an international committee

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Livestock Market Digest

November 15, 2019

LEATHER years. “The leather business is in the worst shape he’s ever seen. He used to get $70 for his hides, he said. Now he’s giving some away for free and soon may have to send them to landfills, where he already ships his lambskins.

Tanning Our Hide Derrell Peel of Oklahoma State University addressed the subject of falling leather prices earlier this year. “On average,” he wrote, “beef by-product values represent about 10% of fed cattle prices. Beef by-product values include values for hides as well as a host of other edible and inedible products. Hides make up the single largest component of by-product values but a weak global hide market has sharply eroded hide and, thus, total by-product values. In the period 2013-2017, hide values (butt-branded, steer) averaged $74.36/apiece and represented 52.3% of total by-product value. In 2018, hides represented 45.6% of by-product value with an average value of $47.93/ apiece. In the first half of 2019, hides have averaged $34.46/

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piece and accounted for 36.6% of total by-product values. The June monthly average hide value was $27.60/piece. And the global hide market continues to weaken.” Peel continued, “China is the major global buyer of hides and demand in China is hampered by tariffs and trade disruptions and by stronger environmental regulations impacting small tanneries. Hide values are so low that more hides are being rendered in some markets and some hides are not worth marketing in other markets. In Australia, for example, some hides are being exported for a loss simply because the cost of environmental regulations to dispose of the hides is a greater loss. Other factors affecting hide values are exchange rates and less demand for leather in luxury cars and footwear, which are using more synthetic materials.” The total fall in U.S. beef by-products in 2019 Peel said, “Are reducing fed cattle values by over $110/head compared to peak by-product values just five years ago.” Peel says leather’s

current demise “began between March 2014 and March 2015, when butt branded hides skidded from $110 to $66.” Because the U.S. government has written such stiff laws regarding the tanning of hides most of them are shipped elsewhere. According to Peel, “In 2015 China bought 63.3% of American hides, Korea 21.2%, Mexico 5.3% and Italy 1.2%.” It seems that hides tanned in America are getting harder to find than packer bids on a Wednesday.

Everything But Leather The leather industry is currently experiencing “a perfect storm” of negatives. As the world is going green the tanning industry is still using antiquated techniques. Policeman and members of the military are replacing holsters and other equipment previously made from leather with Terraflex a thermoplastic material, Cordura, a ballistic weave developed by the military as body armor, Boltaron® which can be molded to fit any design and Kydex® which makes excellent holsters and sheaths. With “biofabrication” processes leather substitutes are being made with everything from mushrooms to skin cells. Memory shoes made from milk jugs and 3D printed shoes made from everything but leather can be delivered to your door by Amazon the day after you order them. The price of leather is also controlled by how well furniture, trucks and cars are selling. Millenials have no need for anything other than IKEA and their folk’s furniture so less leather is used. According to the LA Times story, “The rise of athleisure (whatever that is) and “vegan” clothing is also speeding the decline of an iconic U.S. industry.”

Not Ours To Wear Of course, leading the charge against the use of leather is Peo-

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ple for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). They’ve recently staged many activities against the use of leather reminiscent of what they did with fur. During the big London Fashion Week, pretty PETA members poured buckets of black “toxic slime”, representing the icky waste of the leather industry, over their heads. Signs on the buckets read, “Leather Is a Dirty Business” and “Dump Leather.” In Asia they created a pop-up store promising great looking exotic leather products inside but when you went inside to look at purses or belts you were subjected to a disgusting video featuring people in Bangladesh and other third world countries being mean to animals in a variety of gruesome ways including branding them on the face. You can find the video online but I wouldn’t recommend it if you have a queasy stomach. PETA brought a giant inflatable “bull” to San Francisco where PETA supporters carried signs begging Levi “To End Leather Cruelty.” They greeted Levi’s shareholders as they arrived for the company’s annual meeting and PETA became a stockholder so they could speak, They then urged the company to stop using animal leather on its patches. PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman said, “PETA is calling on Levi to live up to its claims of being a sustainable company by ditching leather in favor of eco and animal friendly vegan fabrics.” According to PETA, “animals are not ours to wear.” PETA also opposes something called speciesism, which they say is “a human-supremacist worldview.”

Freezing In California You may think that PETA’s call to rid the world of leather would fall on deaf ears but then you probably haven’t spent any time in California. After mandating that all eggs come from free range chickens and requiring pet stores to sell only rescued animals, now the state has become the first to outlaw the sale of fur. The kookie law banning the sale was signed into law by the even kookier Governor. This followed on the heals of fur being banned in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Berkely. (No surprise there.) One wonders, what will all the homeless in San Francisco bundle up in on the cold mean streets of Frisco this winter? Unfortunately, what happens in the Golden State often spreads to other liberal states. “I’m quite sure we will be using this opportunity to pass compassionate legislation in other areas,” said Fleur Dawes, spokeswoman for In Defense of Animals. “California is one of the most significant places in the world; it’s a place where the world is looking for precedent.” (When Washington DC starts looking to California for guidance you know we’re doomed!) Both the city and state of New York are currently considering fur bans as is Hawaii. Animal rightists behind the fur bans, say wearing clothing made from the fur of animals is not humane despite the fact that fur is what has kept humans alive for 66 million years or so. The animal rightists are urging consumers to wear artificial or “faux” fur just like the

greenies are urging would-be vegetarians to eat “faux” meat. To no avail, opponents of the ban in California carried signs saying, “Stay out of my closet”. They argued that fake fur is often made from chemicals and is worse for the environment than raising animals. For years PETA members have been throwing paint on people wearing fur coats and breaking windows at fur shops. The tactics seems to have worked. Last year in Los Angeles PETA held a “Fur Is Dead” rally and their next goal is to carry leather out in a coffin. Because we’ve become over-regulated we’ve exported most of our tanneries, so most leather today is imported. And because foreign tanneries don’t abide by American oversight many animals do suffer unnecessarily. Just as PETA did with fur, PETA is now distributing awful photos showing inhumane treatment of animals whose hides are then tanned to make leather in third world countries. The California bill calls for fines of $500 to $1,000 for each violation of selling fur. Second-hand fur is permitted, as are garments made of cow hides, deer, sheep and goat skin. For now, that is. PETA is also lobbying to ban the use of cashmere, silk, down and feathers. But leather is next on their agenda. Keith Kaplan, from the Fur Information Council of America issued the following statement after the California fur ban was passed: “This issue is about much more than animal welfare in the fur industry. It is about the end of animal use of any kind. Fur today, leather tomorrow, your wool blankets and silk sheets — and meat after that.”

Corn Shoes In the first six months of this year vegan clothing, accessories and footwear saw a 54% increase in American retail stores, according to Helen Palmer, an industry expert. Vegan shoes saw the biggest gains and leather footwear currently uses half of the world’s cattle hides. As with all PETA promotions, celebrities are getting in on the act. Meghan Markle, Prince Harry’s wife, made big news when she switched to Veja sneakers, which are made from recycled plastic and corn. The animal rightists say you may think you’re wearing leather from cattle but it just as easily could have come from cats. According to them an estimated 2 million cats and dogs are killed in China each year for their skins. This inspired their latest catchphrase: “You never know for sure whose skin you’re in.” The animal rightists also claim that “nearly 200 animals each year are killed per person in America” and the only way to stop this is “to take the vegan pledge right now.” No more meat and no more leather. Taking the vegan pledge leaves you with little alternative but to wear apparel made from plastics and petrochemicals. Which the imbeciles also want to rid the world of. Maybe they just envision a world of naked PETA members. One wonders, have they no sole?

November 15, 2019

Livestock Market Digest

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The Truth About Pea Protein


oy isolate protein, you’ve hit the skids. Everyone used to be excited about you: the vegetarian protein, a perfect addition to energy bars, shakes, and packaged snacks. But now experts say you’re a potential allergen, you may cause trouble for women with estrogen issues, and you’re tough to find non-GMO. Now, all your concerns have left food manufacturers scrambling to replace you, especially as the public’s interest in protein in general continues to ramp up. Enter pea protein, made from yellow split peas, which is showing up in everything from the usual suspects where we once found soy isolate—energy drinks, bars, and meal-replacement shakes—to the unexpected, including cereals, sal-

ad dressings, veggie burgers, pasta, and even popcorn. Why is pea protein suddenly the next “it” ingredient? For starters, pea protein solves a problem in today’s natural foods industry, where many people either can’t or don’t want to eat meat, dairy, or gluten—all missing from the vegan protein. It’s also well digested by most people, says Ashley Koff, an integrative dietitian in Washington, D.C. “Also, unlike soy, it’s unlikely to be chemically isolated or genetically modified, though it’s still smart to check,” she adds. Pea protein is also rich in some, but not all essential amino acids. Before you start loading up on pea protein and the products that contain it, Koff says there are a few important

things to keep in mind. Peas, like most foods, can be an allergy trigger, too. “It could also cause issues for people with gout, or for those who aren’t eating a lot of other sources of protein, because pea protein isn’t a complete protein,” she says. What’s more, pea protein doesn’t contain essential fatty acids like seafood and nuts, which are crucial for optimal health and which the body can’t produce on its own. “It isn’t smart to look to just one ingredient or food source for protein—or any nutrient for that matter,” says Koff. Then, there’s the issue of how much protein we really need—a debate among nutritionists who argue whether Americans are overconsuming

the macronutrient, especially in wake of popular conception that protein is the ticket to weight loss and everlasting satiety. Our take: Your body needs protein and it will make you feel more full, but just because a product like cereal or popcorn has some pea protein sprinkled over it doesn’t turn it into a fat-burning powerhouse and certainly doesn’t morph an unhealthy snack into a terrific one. The bottom line: Go ahead and look for this new ingredient on the labels of your favorite packaged foods or add a serving of pea protein powder to your go-to morning smoothie—just don’t think of it as the new be-all and end-all. We do think, however, it’s a heck of a load better than soy isolate. Sorry, soy.

HEMP Canadian government. Food makers are showing an interest in blending pea and canola protein together to reach a protein content comparable to milk.

Hemp Hemp seeds have all 10 essential amino acids and also have omega 3 and 6. Meal made from the seeds has a nutty taste and texture, similar to sunflower seeds and pine nuts. There are also no known allergens to hemp. The seeds have been used as a food ingredient for years by companies like Winnipeg-based Manitoba Harvest. The crop is now hitting the mainstream with major North American grocery store chains, such as Walmart Inc., stocking hemp products on their shelves. In the U.S., commercial production for hemp was legalized in late 2018 after a decades-long ban because of the crop’s association with marijuana. Manitoba Harvest offers a range of food products including hemp as an ingredient in nutrition bars, smoothie mixes and

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milk products.

Fava Beans Fava beans are ahead of other proteins in some aspects. The pulse crop has a higher protein content than peas, which could make it a more desirable ingredient. Companies can make a larger profit off of fava beans, which are also known as faba or broad beans, after processing because of the higher protein content, Michael Nickerson, research chair in protein quality and utilization at the University of Saskatchewan, said in a phone interview. At the same time, the beans are processed through similar techniques as peas, which would make it easy for some facilities to make the switch. Beyond Meat Supplier Mulls Fava Beans to Tap Protein Craze

Mung Beans Mung beans have become popular among U.S. plantbased companies, with Just Inc. casting it as a main ingredient in its alternative egg products.

The mung “eggs” are popping up on menus for restaurants including Bareburger, Veggie Grill and Qdoba. Mung-bean flour is also used in pastas, plant-based meats and other foods.

Lentils Lentils are high in fiber and packed with B vitamins, magnesium, zinc and potassium. They also have a blander taste profile than peas. They are “very similar to peas in terms of the protein content, but we’re finding that when we make it into protein isolate it actually has better functionality than some of the pea-protein ingredients,” Nickerson said. Coffee and “Fruitein” Coffee Bean Harvesting as Production Set to Climb to 11 Million Bags Coffee cherries at a plantation in Indonesia on May 30, 2013. Photographer: Dimas Ardian/Bloomberg The pulp of cherries from coffee plants usually gets dumped into landfills. However, they can be processed into a flour that’s high in protein and fiber. The

gluten-free result can be used in bakery and pastry products, according to Henk Hoogenkamp, a plant-protein expert who works as an adviser and board member for several food companies. Protein can also be extracted from the seeds, shells and stems of the fruit, which work well in foods like breakfast bars, granolas and cereals.

Crickets Insects have been used in traditional Asian diets for centuries, but they’re just now starting to catch on in Western menus. Insects are viable alternatives to traditional livestock production as they use little land and produce a fraction of the greenhouse gases generated by cattle. Crickets are the main insect making it’s way into recipes, with the ground-up bugs having little taste. The powder is a filling option and contains far more protein than wheat flour. It is being added to foods like sausages, cookies, muffins, tofu and ice cream. Last year, Loblaw Cos., Canada’s largest grocer, even added cricket

powder to its line of President’s Choice products.

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Livestock Market Digest

November 15, 2019

US Senators Issue Ominous Warning to Supreme Court BY MOLLIE ZIEGLER HEMINGWAY / WWW. INDEPENDENT.ORG


or all the claims about President Donald Trump’s dangerous erosion of institutional norms, it is prominent Democrats who are ramping up their threats to pack the Supreme Court unless it starts producing different outcomes on pet issues. Rule differently on gun control or face restructuring, several Democratic senators warned in a brief filed August 12. Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Richard Durbin (D-IL), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), issued the threat in response to the court’s consideration of the constitutionality of a New York City law strictly limiting the transport of guns by their law-abiding owners. “The Supreme Court is not well. And the people know it. Perhaps the Court can heal itself before the public demands it be ‘restructured in order to reduce the influence of politics,’” the liberal senators wrote, quoting a Quinnipiac University poll showing that 69 percent of Democrats support court packing. The message from the Democratic senators was not subtle: That’s a nice court you have there. It would be a shame if something happened to it. Contrary to what the senators are implying, the issue isn’t that the public at large is frus-

trated with the court. The issue is Democrats. Another recent poll shows that, while 62 percent of Americans have a favorable view of the Supreme Court, that percentage drops to 49 percent for Democrats, according to a recent Pew Research Center survey—the lowest percentage in decades. Democratic politicians appear to be letting these polls dictate their policy proposals. South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg proposed limiting justices’ lifetime terms on the bench, while several other Democratic candidates for the 2020 presidential nomination have already spoken in favor of adding justices to the court. As the progressive magazine Mother Jones put it: “Court-Packing Went from a Fringe Idea to a Serious Democratic Proposal.” It’s not the first time Democratic politicians have tried to regain control of the Court by court packing. The Constitution doesn’t fix the number of justices on the court. It ranged from five to ten in the early years of the republic before being codified at nine in the Judiciary Act of 1869. President Franklin Roosevelt, frustrated that the court had declared key provisions of his New Deal unconstitutional, proposed the Judicial Procedures Reform Bill in 1937. It would have allowed him to appoint as many as six additional justices. Even the Democrats who controlled Congress and his own Vice President opposed the plan.

But while Roosevelt’s plan to increase the number of justices failed, ultimately the pressure Roosevelt brought to bear achieved the desired result. Congress passed a bill that allowed justices who retired to receive full, rather than one-half, pensions. Four justices stepped down within the next four years and another two died, giving him six of the eight justices he eventually appointed. Another justice, Owen Robert, began voting to uphold Roosevelt’s agenda in what has been dubbed the famous “switch in time that saved nine,” on the assumption that his conversion was an attempt to stave off the president’s attempt to reconfigure the court. Democrat threats to pack the court may be another attempt to threaten justices into changing their votes. Unfortunately, the tactic occasionally works. In 2012, the initial vote of the court regarding President Obama’s signature legislative accomplishment, the Affordable Care Act, was to strike down the law for violating the Commerce Clause. The media, senators and even President Obama began previewing arguments they would use if the court so ruled, calling the court partisan, activist, and illegitimate. Chief Justice Roberts, worried about the blowback on the court, negotiated a deal with Justices Kagan and Breyer. They voted to overturn the law’s expansion of Medicaid in exchange for him voting to uphold the individual mandate as

a tax. Both inside and outside the court, the view was that the chief justice had changed his legal position not on principle but due to public pressure. However, the Court’s true legitimacy derives from its freedom to make decisions in accordance with law, not in its reaching decisions that will win favor with powerful politicians or media elite. A justice who allows the president or other politicians to change his or her vote does not show independence. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg surprised some recently when she strongly decried court packing for political gain in an interview with NPR’s Nina Totenberg. Noting that the Constitution doesn’t require nine justices, she said it was a bad idea when FDR proposed it, and it’s a bad idea now. “You mentioned before the court appearing partisan. Well if anything would make the court appear partisan, it would be that. One side saying when we’re in power, we’re going to enlarge the number of judges so we will have more people who will vote the way we want them to. So, I’m not at all in favor of that solution to what I see as a temporary situation,” she said. The best solution for depoliticizing the Supreme Court is for it to have a smaller role in America’s social, economic, and political life. The high court should determine whether legislation is Constitutional. It should not correct, rewrite, update, or amend statutes, much less tinker

with the Constitution itself. A less political Supreme Court is more probable when Congress legislates clearly and utilizes the Constitution’s amendment process. Much of the temptation for courts to overreach into the political arena arises from the perception that change through the proper channels is not feasible. Democratic senators demanding the Supreme Court take on an activist role is really a declaration of their own incompetence as legislators. Over the last 30 years, and at several critical junctures, nominations and advise and consent responsibilities have become increasingly politicized. As always, the Constitution’s independent and limited judiciary remains preferable to a hyper political court that is legislating from the bench and subject to the same base political pressures as members of Congress pandering for votes. Similarly, as voters we need to take our responsibility as guardians of the Constitution seriously and elect presidents and senators who demonstrate integrity in dealing with the court. A shorter version of this article was published in the San Francisco Chronicle on August 22, 2019. MOLLIE ZIEGLER HEMINGWAY is a Senior Editor at The Federalist, a Fox News Channel contributor, and co-author (with Carrie Lynn Severino) of Justice on Trial: The Kavanaugh Confirmation and the Future of the Supreme Court. She spoke at the Independent Institute event, “Justice on Trial: The Kavanaugh Confirmation & the Supreme Court.”

Dems Urge Conservation of 30% of Land, Water by 2030 BY KELLIE LUNNEY, E&E NEWS REPORTER


en. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) will unveil a lands and waters conservation resolution. Francis Chung/E&E News Retiring Democratic Senator Tom Udall, New Mexico and Senator Michael Bennet, Colorado introduced a resolution on October 22 calling for a national conservation goal of protecting at least 30 percent of the country’s lands and waters by 2030.

The “Thirty by Thirty Resolution to Save Nature” urges the federal government to set the conservation target to help fight climate change as well as improve access to nature for communities of color. The measure “recognizes that nature — like climate change — is reaching a tipping point,” said Udall in prepared remarks for an event later this morning at the Center for American Progress that will also feature Representative Deb Haaland (D-N.M.). “Many ecosystems and wildlife species are nearing the point of

no return.” The resolution recommends that the government work with local communities, states, tribes and private landowners to increase conservation efforts to sequester carbon and greenhouse gas emissions in land and water. Other stated objectives include: preventing species extinction; stabilizing ecosystems; increasing economic opportunities for farmers, ranchers, fishermen and foresters; protecting private property rights and traditional land uses; and addressing environmental justice issues

for economically disadvantaged communities. Democratic Senators Dick Durbin, Illinois, Cory Booker, New Jersey and Kamala Harris, California are co-sponsors. The measure, which Udall called “ambitious and urgent,” cited several dire statistics from scientific reports, including the Third National Climate Assessment, released in 2014, and 2019 findings from the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services. “The resolution reflects the will of the scientific community

— and scientists like E.O. Wilson, who says that we need to protect half the planet to save the whole,” said Udall in his prepared remarks. “Protecting and restoring 30 percent of our lands and waters by 2030, with more protected in the decades following, is a necessary step to stem the collapse of our natural systems,” he said. Simple resolutions, unlike bills, do not carry the force of law and are used to express the sense of either chamber on a particular matter.


Our turn to serve

November 15, 2019

Livestock Market Digest

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The Latest Flip-Flop on Red Meat Uses Best Science in Place of Best Guesses BY NINA TEICHOLZ FOR THE LOS ANGELES TIMES


ggs are bad; eggs are good. Fat is bad; fat is good. Meat is bad; meat is… OK? That last food flip-flop made big headlines last in early October. It was a “remarkable turnabout,” “jarring,” “stunning.” How, it was asked, could seemingly bedrock nutrition advice turn on a dime? The answer is that many of the nation’s official nutrition recommendations — including the idea that red meat is a killer — have been based on a type of weak science that experts have unfortunately become accustomed to relying upon. Now that iffy science is being questioned. At stake are deeply entrenched ideas about healthy eating and trustworthy nutrition guidelines, and with many scientists invested professionally, and even financially, in the status quo, the fight over the science won’t be pretty. Red meat is a particularly contentious topic because people have such strong objections to eating meat for a variety of reasons: the environment, animal rights and even religion (Seventh-day Adventists advise against it). Last week’s news, however, goes a long way toward removing health effects from the list of reasons for favoring a vegetarian diet. The highly rigorous four-paper review of the science, in the prestigious Annals of Internal Medicine journal, looked at all the research examining health and red meat and concluded that only “low- or very low-certainty”

evidence existed to show that this meat causes any kind of disease — not cancer, not heart disease, not Type 2 diabetes. Eating red meat isn’t killing us. Remember that the original reason we’ve distrusted red meat is that starting in 1961, the American Heart Assn. told us to limit our consumption of saturated fat to prevent heart disease. However, recent decades have seen a reconsideration of this topic. A recent paper in the journal BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine consolidates 17 separate reviews showing these fats, whether from meat, cheese or coconut oil, have no effect on mortality. And if red meat causes disease by some mechanism other than saturated fat, no strong body of evidence has emerged to support it. The key phrase is “strong body of evidence.” Unfortunately, our nutrition guidelines are primarily based on epidemiological studies, which generally follow a large group of people over time, asking them to self-report what they’ve eaten and then observing eventual health outcomes. These studies can demonstrate association — which has its uses — but they rarely establish causation. The odd exception has occurred when epidemiology tips the scales in a big way, as it did with tobacco. Heavy smokers were found to have a nine to 25-fold increased risk for cancer compared with never-smokers, a difference so big that causation could be implied. Yet in nutrition epidemiology, the differing rates rarely exceed 1.5-fold, which most epidemiologists outside of nutrition consider to be non-findings.

Only clinical trials can demonstrate cause and effect because these are actual experiments. At their simplest, a group fed a diet is compared to another group of non-dieting controls. Such experiments aren’t always easy, but they’re nevertheless considered the gold standard by international systems for reviewing scientific evidence. The red meat studies used one such review system, known as GRADE (Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluations). In properly prioritizing clinical trials over observational research, GRADE necessarily pushed epidemiology off its pedestal, and this caused the GRADE team of 40-plus researchers from more than 10 countries to conclude that reducing your intake of meat is very unlikely to make you healthier. The nutrition establishment went ballistic. Even before publication of the Annals papers, 14 heavyweights in the field signed a letter demanding a preemptive “retraction” of the review. All the signers were members of a group called the True Health Initiative that advocates for a plant-based diet. Many of them recommend plant-based diets in their research papers, which rely heavily on epidemiology. Some are financially conflicted. With so much research dependent on donors, the appearance of conflicts, or worse, isn’t uncommon. After publication of the red-meat review, it was quickly pointed out that while its primary author had no apparent conflicts related to the meat study, he had earlier accepted funding from an industry group

Evaluating nutrition findings using the highest possible scientific standard is clearly a painful process, but it’s essential. If we’ve believed in a food pyramid based on a foundation of sand, it’s time to get it right, regardless of our assumptions, investments or biases. Taking the American public on a decades-long ride of “best guesses” based on weak science that are likely to be debunked by more rigorous clinical trials has not led to better health. According to government data, despite a 28% reduction in redmeat consumption in the U.S. since 1970, some 60% of Americans now suffer from at least one chronic disease in which diet is a major risk factor. The Annals review is exactly what we need: dietary cause-and-effect information based on strong science.

with members like Mars and PepsiCo for a 2017 review of sugar research. On the other side, the True Health Initiative letter signers included five epidemiologists from Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, which in 2017-18 received hundreds of thousands of dollars from walnut and peanut industry groups; the walnut group is cited as a donor for the previous five years. At least nine Harvard papers in five years have supported the health benefits of nuts. Whatever their possible incentives, the critics of the Annals review principally objected to its methodology. GRADE, they said, was an “ill-fitting measuring tool,” designed to evaluate drugs but not “lifestyle studies.” However, no less than the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine recommends GRADE as one of only a few viable methods for evaluating nutrition studies for the U.S. Dietary Guidelines.

Nina Teicholz is the executive director of the not-for-profit Nutrition Coalition, which accepts no funds from any food industry, company or interested party. She does accept fees when she speaks to groups about diet and health. She is the author of “The Big Fat Surprise.”

Administration Partners with Rural Communities to Grow Outdoor Recreation Economy partner communities create an action plan to grow the local outdoor recreation economy in ways that promote sustainable resource management and environmentally friendly community development. The selected communities are planning to revitalize their communities in a variety of ways, including building new trail connections, boosting downtown amenities, connecting nearby hiking-biking trails to downtown, and working to attract recreation-related economic opportunities. The planning process will take place over four to six months, with a two-day facilitated community workshop as the focal point. Participants will work together to identify a vision, goals, and specific actions to realize the locally set goals. According to the Outdoor Industry Association’s 2017 report on The National Outdoor Recreation Economy, outdoor activities – including hiking, biking, boating, fishing, hunting, birdwatching, off-road vehicle riding, skiing, snowmobiling, and viewing historic places – generated $887 billion in annual spending and created more than seven million jobs. These activities can bring new investment

to local economies, heighten interest in conservation of forests and other natural resources, and improve the quality of life for residents and visitors.




n support of President Trump’s Executive Order on Promoting Agriculture and Rural Prosperity in America, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service and the Northern Border Regional Commission (NBRC) announced that they have selected 10 communities under the Recreation Economy for Rural Communities assistance program to help revitalize their Main Streets through outdoor recreation. Several of the selected communities are in or adjacent to Opportunity Zones, economically-distressed areas that can be designated for preferential tax treatment under the president’s historic tax reform package. The 10 communities selected for assistance include: Cambridge, New York; Fryeburg, Maine; Giles County, Virginia; Glenwood Springs, Colorado; Gorham, New Hampshire; Grants, New Mexico; Jasper, Alabama; John Day, Oregon; Poultney, Vermont; and Thompson Falls, Montana. Through Recreation Economy for Rural Communities assistance, a planning team appointed by EPA and its federal counterparts will help the




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Page 6

Livestock Market Digest

November 15, 2019


Donald Brown

Qualifying Broker

505-507-2915 cell 505-838-0095 fax


Bar M Real Estate

SCOTT MCNALLY 575/622-5867 575/420-1237 Ranch Sales & Appraisals

Scott Land co. Ranch & Farm Real Estate

116 Plaza PO Box 1903 Socorro, NM 87801


Bottari Realty

AsLow LowAsAs 3% As 4.5% OPWKCAP 2.9% OPWKCAP 2.9%

Paul Bottari, Broker

775/752-3040 Nevada Farms & raNch PrOPerTY 1301 Front Street, Dimmitt, TX 79027 Ben G. Scott – Broker Krystal M Nelson –CO/NM QB#15892 800-933-9698 day/eve.

WE NEED LISTINGS ON ALL TYPES OF AG PROPERTIES LARGE OR SMALL! all weather road. Adjoins the Pajarito Creek Ranch if more ■ PLEASE CALL – for details on this choice ranch for acreage is desired. hunting/cattle production, located between Clayton & Raton, NM, information being prepared, great Elk hunting & 40 ac. ■ PECOS RIVER RANCH – Guadalupe Co., NM – Scenic, w/nice home! 968 +/- ac. deeded & 519 +/- state lease acres, live water ranch on both sides of the Pecos River (strong flow daily) ■ POST, TX – 6,376.92 acre ranch in Kent Co., TX on pvmt. between Santa Rosa & Ft. Sumner; wildlife, paired w/water & on all weather roads w/a virtually brand new custom & cattle for the buyer looking for top tier assets in a rugged built home, really nice guest/hunting lodge, state-of-the-art New Mexico ranch! barns & pens, a complete line of farm & ranch equipment, a registered Red Angus herd of cows, mineral income w/ ■ LOGAN/NARA VISA, NM – 980 ac. +/- w/940.6 ac. potential for commercial water sales & secluded, beautiful CRP, irrigated in the past, land lays good & is located on the areas w/bluffs & meadows around every turn in the road, an north side ofHwy. 54. excellent supply of stock water from subs & windmills, deep ■ SANTA ROSA, NM – 78 ac. +/- heavily improved for year round dirt tanks & The North Fork of the Brazos River horses, cattle & other livestock w/virtually new barns, pens. through the ranch. cross fences etc., on city water, w/internet access to the ■ TOP OF THE WORLD II – Colfax Co., NM – 7402.09 front gate. ac. +/- (4,789.69 Deeded – 2,612.4 State Lease) w/historic ■ OTERO CO., NM – 120 scenic ac. +/- on the Rio Penasco “POINT OF ROCKS” monument on the Santa Fe Trail, is surrounded by Lincoln National Forest lands covered in attractive improvements, all weather access! Pines & opening up to a grass covered meadow along 3,300 ■ EAST EDGE OF FT. SUMNER, NM – immaculate feet +/- of the Rio Penasco. This property is an ideal location 7.32 ac. +/- w/a beautiful home, a 900 hd. grow yard & to build a legacy mountain getaway home. other improvements w/a long line of equipment included, ■ TEXLINE SPECIAL – 472.4 ac. irr., on Dalhart/Clayton on pvmt. hwy. in New Mexico, adjoins the Grassland w/Organic ■ MIAMI SPECIAL – Colfax Co., NM – 40 ac. +/- w/ Callworking Buena Vistafacilities RealtyPotential. at 575-226-0671 or the listing agent irrigated pastures, great cattle & handling ■ GRASSLAND W/ORGANIC POTENTIAL – Union Co., Loriirrigated Bohm or Melody Sandberg 575-825-1291. & a beautiful home, on pvmt., from575-760-9847, Miami Lake. NM - adjoins the Texline Special, 927.45 ac. +/-, on pvmt. good MLS or ■ TOP OF THE WORLD –Many Union Co., NM –pictures 5,025.76 on ■ FT. SUMNER, NM – 17 ac. +/- w/water rights currently +/- ac. of choice grassland w/state-of-the-art working pens, planted in alfalfa & a beautiful home built in 2007 w/3 recently remodeled bunk house, barbed wire fences in very bdrms., 3 bathrooms, an oversize garage & a 24X50 metal good to new condition, well watered, on pvmt. shop. ■ UNION CO., NM – 955 ac. +/- w/excellent improvements ■ PRICE REDUCED! MALPAIS OF NM – Lincoln/Socorro for a stocker or cow/calf operation, modern ¼ mi. sprinkler, Counties, 37.65 sections +/- (13,322 ac. +/- Deeded, 8,457 all-weather roads on three sides, 374 ac. +/- CRP. ac. +/- BLM Lease, 2,320 ac. +/- State Lease) good, useable improvements & water, some irrigation w/water rights for 2 ■ WE CAN NOW DIVIDE THE PAJARITO RANCH – pivot sprinklers, on pvmt. & all-weather road. Guadalupe Co., NM as follows: 3501.12 ac. +/- of grassland ■ PRICE REDUCED! WE CAN DIVIDE this Springfield, w/a commercial water well located adjacent to I40 w/ Co. 1,440 ac. farm & ranch as follows: an irrigated farm, capability of producing large incomes together w/a great set a 5,000 hd. fdyd. w/acreage & improvments & grassland/ of pens, a 17,000 gal. water storage tank, overhead cake bin, CRP w/improvements. Please see our website for further hay barn & other stock wells. 700.89 ac. +/- of grassland can information. be purchased in addition to the 3501.12 ac. The beautiful, virtually new custom built home w/all amenities and a large ■ BROWN CO., TX – near Brookesmith - 424.79 ac. +/-, virtually new metal barn w/an apartment inside on 40 ac. very scenic ranch w/one mi. of Clear Creek, highly improved can be purchased separately or w/the ranch. Adjoins the ranch w/fencing, well watered, home, hunting cabin & Boylan Ranch if more acreage is desired. abundant wildlife. ■ THE BOYLAN RANCH – Newkirk, NM - 2,360 ac. +/■ LIITLE RIVER RANCH – Pottawatomie Co., OK – 950 w/useable house & pens, a large domestic well for lvstk./ ac. +/-, beautiful home, excellent facilities, highly productive, wildlife watering w/potential for commercial water sales, 40 mi. SE of Oklahoma City.

Please view our website for details on these properties, choice TX, NM & CO ranches (large & small), choice ranches in the high rainfall areas of OK, irr./dryland/CRP & commercial properties. We need your listings on any types of ag properties in TX., NM, OK & CO.

INTEREST RATESAS AS LOW 3% INTEREST RATES LOW ASAS 4.5% Payments Scheduledon on2525 Years Payments Scheduled Years

521 West Second St. • Portales, NM 88130

575-226-0671 or 575-226-0672 fax

Buena Vista Realty

Joe Stubblefield & Associates 13830 Western St., Amarillo, TX 806/622-3482 • cell 806/674-2062 Michael Perez Associates Nara Visa, NM • 575/403-7970

Qualifying Broker: A.H. (Jack) Merrick 575-760-7521

521 West Second St., Portales, NM 88130

Selling residential, farm, ranch, commercial and relocating properties. COLETTA RAY

Pioneer Realty 1304 Pile Street, Clovis, NM 88101

575-799-9600 Direct 575.935.9680 Office 575.935.9680 Fax

TEXAS & OKLA. FARMS & RANCHES ONE OF TEXAS’ BEST - 840 ac, Hunt Co., TX. 20 miles to McKinney, 30 miles to Dallas, 8 miles to Greenville. Beautiful modern 4,000 sq ft home sets high on hiill with view to all of the ranch. 20 lakes and dirt tanks, excellent grass, barns, cattle pens, nice barn, apartment, 8 pastures. All this 3.4 million. Owner ready to retire.


230 AC GAME & RETREAT that is a dream. Lakes, woods, meadows, game galore, 35 miles out of Dallas, Kaufman Co.

Joe Priest Real Estate

1-800/671-4548 •


Near Conchas and Ute Lakes - 1616 S Sixth St. 3 bdr, 1 full and a 3/4 bath 1600 sq. ft. home on a large lot in Tucumcari, drive thru carport with large yard, great neighborhood, near all schools and Mesa College. Ute Lake - Logan, NM - 715 Fox Drive - 1/2 mile from boat ramp, fenced w/chain link. Nice 2 bdrm, 1 bath mobile home with sturdy carport on each side, and very nice deck on east side. Lots of pictures of both properties on website

See these and other properties at

M U R N E Y , ASSOCIATES, REALTORS® 1625 E. Primrose • Springfield, MO 65804 • • 823-2300

See all my listings at: Paul McGilliard - Cell: 417/839-5096 • 1-800/743-0336

Missouri Land Sales • MAJOR PRICE REDUCTION! 564 ACRE GASCONADE RIVER FARM. 360 Acres of lush grass/hay/tillable bottom ground make up this highly productive livestock/ hunting property.Well maintained older 4 Bed, 3 Ba home. Only 45 miles east of Springfield, Mo. MLS#60115449 • WILL BE AUCTIONED OFF 10-18-2019, Call Dave for details. 240 Acres surveyed into small buildable tracts. Hunting retreat (lots of wildlife), recreational (build your dream home overlooking your lake & enjoy!) Then sell surveyed tracts off to finance your retirement/investment. Good roads thru surveyed acreage, only1+ miles from Hwy.60 (4-Lane Hwy). A tract of land this large, surveyed in small acreages rarely ever comes on the market! Owner may divide & sell 160 acres or 80 acres. This property is priced to sell! MLS 60128270.




33 years in the ranch business – see for videos & brochures

DUANE & DIXIE McGARVA RANCH: approx. 985 acres Likely, CA. with about 600+ acre gravity flood irrigated pastures PLUS private 542 AU BLM permit. About 425 acres so of the irrigated are level to flood excellent pastures with balance good flood irrigated pastures. NO PUMPING COST! Dryland is perfect for expansion to pivot irrigated alfalfa if desired. Plus nearby BLM permit for 540 AU is fenced into 4 fields on about 18,000 acres - located only 7 miles away. - $3,125,000 BEAVER CREEK RANCH: about 82,000 acres - with 2,700 deeded acres plus contiguous USFS & BLM permits for 450 pair; 580+- acres irrigated alfalfa, pasture, and meadow from Beaver Creek water rights and one irrigation well. 3 homes, 2 hay barns, 4 feedlots each w/ 250 ton barns, 2 large reservoirs, can run up to 500-600 cows YEAR ROUND. $5,400,000 ROUND HOUSE RANCH: approx. 291 acres just outside Redding, CA. Adjudicated Water Rights from Oak Run Creek – about 45 acres flood irrigated & well set up fields & irrigation system. Springs plus 4 ponds. Like new Headquarters tucked in next to a pond and beautiful view overlooking the irrigated fields. Additional caretaker or rental house near ranch entrance, equipment shed, large shop. All like new. Reduced Asking Price $1,995,000

BILL WRIGHT, SHASTA LAND SERVICES, INC. 530-941-8100 • DRE# 00963490 •

O’NEILL LAND, llc P.O. Box 145, Cimarron, NM 87714 • 575/376-2341 • Fax: 575/376-2347 •

CHICO CREEK RANCH, Colfax County, NM. NEW LISTING. 6,404.26 +/- Total Acres, Located approximately 10 miles east of Springer New Mexico. 3,692.60 +/- deeded acres with balance in state lease. Excellent grass and water. Two plus miles of the Chico Creek meandering through the center of the property. Additional wells and dirt tanks. Nice historic head quarters privately located with shade trees and excellent views of the property. Shipping pens in central portion of property. $2,837,318 WAGON MOUND RANCH, Mora/Harding Counties, NM. 8,880.80 +/- Total Acres, a substantial holding with good mix of grazing land and broken country off rim into Canadian River. Has modern water system located 17 miles east of Wagon Mound off pavement then 3 miles on county road. Two bedroom historic house, once a stage stop. Wildlife include antelope, mule deer and some elk. $2,710,000 $2,440,000 MIAMI HORSE HEAVEN, Colfax County, NM. Very private approx. 4,800 sq ft double walled adobe 4 bedroom, 3 bathroom home with many custom features, 77.50 +/- deeded acres with water rights and large 7 stall barn, insulated metal shop with own septic. Would suit indoor growing operation, large hay barn/equipment shed. $1,375,000


FRENCH TRACT FARM, 491.55 +/- deeded acres, Colfax County, NM two pivots, some gated pipe, 371 irrigation shares in AVID, House, barn, close to exit 419 off I25 on HWY 58. All in one contiguous parcel with access on all sides. $700,000 RATON MILLION DOLLAR VIEW, Colfax County, NM. 97.68 +/- deeded acres in 2 parcels with excellent home, big shop, wildlife, a true million dollar view at the end of a private road. $489,000. Also listed with the house and one parcel for $375,000 MIAMI 20 ACRES, Colfax County, NM quality 2,715 sqft adobe home, barn, grounds, fruit trees and mature trees. Extremely private setting. REDUCED $355,000. This is a must see. Also listed with same house with 10 +/- deeded acres for $310,000 MAXWELL 19.50 ACRES, Colfax County, NM quality extensive remodeled two bedroom, one bathroom home with water rights, outbuildings for livestock in NE NM. Great south facing porch for sipping iced tea cooling off at 6,000 ft elevation. Would make great summer getaway and winter ski base. $270,000 MORA COUNTY 160 +/- ACRES, 12 miles south east of Wagon Mound, remote, excellent solar well good mix of sub irrigated and range. Small cabin. $154,000

November 15, 2019

Livestock Market Digest


A Day Is A Life-time BY LEE PITTS


’m 67 years old and thought I was a goner at 40. The Doctors thought so too. If you’d have offered me a deal back then that I could live to be only 45 years old I’d have taken the deal in a heartbeat. The thought of living to be 67 was crazy. I’ve looked death square in the face many times in my life, have been opened up and carved on from the Mayo clinic to local quacks and have suffered two significant strokes. After this last one there were days I thought I didn’t have 24 hours to live. I see doctors on a weekly basis, it takes 11 different prescriptions to keep me alive, I haven’t been able to eat normally for 27 years, have to sleep in a chair, can’t drive or travel 20 miles from home without getting pancreatitis, and I’m in constant pain. And I think I’m the luckiest guy in the world! I’m one tough son of a gun and people who know my story often ask how I do it. I always reply, “One day at a time,” If you break it down into its smallest parts you’ll realize that a day is a very long time indeed: 24 hours, 1440 minutes or 86,400 seconds. If a hug with my beautiful wife lasts 5 seconds that means I could hug her 17,280 times in a day, although I doubt she’d let me. In a single day do you know how many dogs you could pet, how many times you could smile at the cat and how many times you could tell your spouse or kids that you love them? How long does it take to enjoy a sunup or a sundown, to play peeka-boo with a baby or spend a few minutes in quiet reflection enjoying your aloneness while digging in the dirt, the potting soil of life.(Hard work is the fertilizer.) It only takes a few minutes to romp in the rain, read good writing, sing old songs off key at the top of your lungs while dancing as if no one is watching, relax in a rocking chair on the front porch and wave to everyone who passes by, ride a bicycle into the wind, fly a kite, sail a boat, play checkers with a youngster and let them win, or shovel the snow off the front walk of an elderly person and then enjoy a hot cup

For Real Estate and Classified Advertising Please Call Randy at 505/850-8544

of cocoa with them afterwards? You could do all that in a single day and still have plenty of time left over to honor an old soul at the rest home with reflections of days gone by. Really, how long does it take to put in a few jigsaw pieces with your mother, watch your grandkid’s ballgame or dance recital, enjoy a barbecued steak and homemade ice cream with the neighbors, or plant a tree that will provide shade for others long after you’re gone? One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned during my difficult journey is that life is still worth living even if you’re not destined for greatness. So slow down, get out of the fast lane and back to nature because the enjoyment is in the journey, not the destination. I just spent two minutes watching a covey of baby quail try to follow their mother up a curb next to the sidewalk and I laughed myself silly. I’ve read there are some

species of butterflies that only live for one day and just think of the beauty they bring into this world. So when I’m lucky enough to wake up in the morning, no matter how bad I feel, I vow to be a butterfly that day. I have no time to waste on poor pitiful me. I don’t waste my valuable seconds dreaming of a life other than the the one I have. I spend my days saying “hello” not “goodbye.” My goal is to make each day a more glorious masterpiece than the day before. And if I have done my job, at the end of a long day I’m exhausted having squeezed every second out of life that day. Then I can float away into dreamland and get to relive my wonderful life all over again. Want to get a lot more living out of your life? Take it from me... be a butterfly.

Page 7

RIDING HERD that travel thousands of miles to market. Many of today’s consumers want a connection with the good people who grow their food and they don’t trust the multinational corporations to deliver something safe. They want to eliminate the middleman and they’re willing to pay more for food from a local farmer. They are curious how their food is grown and want to meet and talk to those who grew it. They want the story behind the spuds and the spareribs. I have a friend who refuses to buy food in grocery stores. He buys all his produce and meat at farmers markets and the meat is processed in a USDA approved mobile processing unit. The grass-fed beef he buys comes from a breed called British White Park and he insists the beef is far superior to any he’s ever eaten. I try to convince him that store bought beef is safe and healthy but he’s not buying any of it. If you want to see how the family farm can compete these days just go to a farmers market and you’ll meet farmers and ranchers who take great pride in

continued from page one

what they produce. Word travels fast that a farmer at one end of the street has some fabulous heritage tomatoes, or that the berry man has some extra-special boysenberries this week. The family farm is not dead, it’s just different. Sometimes it’s part-time farmers called “sundowners” who work eight to five in town and then spend nights and weekends growing something to sell at the farmers market. I have another friend who grows all types of vegetables, puts an assortment in individual boxes each week along with a bottle of wine from his own vineyard, and sells subscriptions to receive one box every week. I was raised on a garden and I feel sorry for the great majority of people in this country who’ve never tasted how good vegetables are that are eaten the same day they’re picked. They’ve never tasted farm-fresh corn on the cob with real butter, how good a peach tastes picked right off the tree or how good beef can be when you know the person who produced it.

Annual Production Sale December 2, 2019


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100 Bulls • 350 Bred Commercial Heifers

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Page 8

Livestock Market Digest


The Corruption of Freedom

the board of supervisors took it upon themselves to raise our property taxes by 18 percent even though the taxpayers voted down the initiative twice at the ballot box. This is just more solid proof that politicians are the biggest enemy of the working person. The politicians are paid no matter what. They wouldn’t consider that maybe the local worker might need some time to recover from eight years of a bad economy. Talk about arrogance and lack of respect for their constituents. Obviously, they have no respect for your vote, although they will promise you all sorts of things when election time rolls around. In the latter part of September the Cattleman’s Beef


(The views in this column are not necessarily those of the New Mexico Cattle Growers’ Association or this publication.)


inally the economy seems to be rolling right along, the unemployment rate is the lowest of all time, and the average rancher and farmer can see something positive in their bank account for the first time in about 10 years. Because American workers are finally getting a little relief, local politicians are going crazy trying to rob them of the few dollars that they can finally put aside. In our local Yavapai County,

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Board’s Beef Promotions Operating Committee announced how the funds from the Beef Checkoff Fund will be distributed. Once again it was announced that the National Cattleman’s Beef Association would receive more than half of those funds which just happens to be more than half of NCBA’s operating budget. One of the results of the NCBA’s gain of the money is that they used it to get rid of “Country of Origin Labeling” on beef. Wouldn’t you say that helps the packer and does nothing for the individual American Cattleman? Yet, we that sell cattle at the local sale yard are expected to pay the Checkoff TAX. It’s plain and simple, NCBA bites the very hand that feeds them and then probably laughs about it. Now there is talk of adding a second dollar to the Checkoff. One thing about it, no one in NCBA gives a damn about your freedom of choice. Why isn’t the Checkoff ever spent locally? During 2018 from April 26th – May 3rd Arizona teachers went on strike for a 20 percent pay raise. The name of the movement was known as Red for Ed. However, the worst part of this strike was that the Republican led Arizona legislature passed a measure to give the teachers the pay raise and it was signed by our Republican Governor Doug Ducey.

November 15, 2019 The fact that a Republican state government would give into a strike led by the teachers union, namely the National Education Association, which in turn is the largest contributor to the Democrat Party astounds me. The NEA said, jump and the Arizona Republicans said, “How high?” I know there were similar occurrences in California, but I’m not certain of the other western states. Fast forward to February of 2019 and the teachers union is talking about another strike here in Arizona. Why wouldn’t they? There wasn’t even a negotiation last year and they got everything they asked for. Of course, the Arizona taxpayer is responsible for paying the bill, but were they ever considered? Now, we are enjoying a new tax to pay the teachers even more. The politicians did not even negotiate on our behalf. I asked one of my state representatives about it and he exclaimed that some of the teachers protesting at the Capitol surrounded his car when he went to get in it. Can you just imagine that? I bet six teachers carrying 12” rulers are pretty darn scary. I told him that I was glad he got out of there alive. Here we have a representative government that doesn’t represent us. The politician’s solution to everything is a tax increase. Tax increases do nothing but erode freedom.

The scary part of all this is that many people actually think that giving up their freedoms means nothing, nor are they willing to fight for them. Any rancher or cowboy I talk to mostly want to be left alone to live out their life with the least government interference as possible. When I talk to city dwellers friends of mine, they pretty much rely on the government for their safety. They are not interested in being responsible for themselves. They seem to think that government is needed to provide police, ambulances, etc. Some of them have explained that they live in fear everyday even though they are in good neighborhoods. The city dwellers are willing to give up any freedom if it means that they will be safer. While I agree that we need some government, (probably less than half of what we have) to keep order and maintain a safe environment for all citizens. I do not think we should sacrifice our freedoms to get it. In my book we can have both and the way to accomplish that is to keep pressure on our politicians to do the right thing and be careful who we elect. This reminds me of Benjamin Franklin who stated, “Anyone that would sacrifice freedom for safety deserves neither freedom nor safety.” Beware folks; everyday someone in power is trying to diminish your freedom.

Fetal Programming’s Past, ! w o Present,iand Future be N ibe

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k c o t s e v i L Digest

says Gunn. “Nourishment of the Cattle producers have a lot to fetus can impact a lot of a calf’s future biological processes, such thank David J. Barker for. David J. Barker was a British as growth, reproductive function physician and epidemiologist. and more.” He argued that inadequate nutrition in utero could program a Managing for fetal human fetus to have long-term programming Please subscribe me to disease consequences. In short, “We’re starting to understand the Livestock Market for: his research uncovered that malthatDigest a deficiency or shortage in nourished 1human fetuses are cow nutrition can really impact Year at $19.95 2 Years at $29.95 more likely to suffer from diseas- the future calf’s potential,” says es linked to obesity later in life, Gunn. “There’s no acceptable including cardiovascular issues time to make a cow ‘rough it’ and andNAME diabetes. back off nutrition. You’ve got to Barker’s work was taken and provide adequate minerals, proapplied to cattle, delivering us tein and energy during every the ADDRESS concept we know today as trimester to set up the fetus and fetal programming. eventual calf for success.” “Fetal programming knowlChanging forages can cause a PHONE edge gives us the insight we need gap in nutrition, which can easto manage our herds different- ily go undetected. Quality and ly—ensuring pregnant cows are quantity change with the weathE-MAIL well nourished,” says Patrick er, and it’s essential to have a Gunn, Ph.D. and beef technical plan in place to make sure cows sales consultant with PurinaMC Ani- VISA are getting the nourishment they mal Nutrition need despite changing forages. “Nourished cows have nourSimple supplementation ished fetuses, can help meet cow needs yearCARD NUMBERand nourished fetuses generally result in healthy, round, ensuring cows have growthy calves with long-term the nutrition they need to be EXPIRATION DATE potential.” well-nourished. “We’ve got to think about nuFetal programming trition in terms of meeting fetus SIGNATURE explained needs, too,” says Gunn. “We’re Fetal programming is the not just meeting cow needs. Payment concept thatEnclosed a maternal stimu- We’re making sure or her eventusubscribe the nutrition it lus or insult at a critical period al calf is getting online its genetic in fetal development has long- needs to maximize @ term effects on the SEND PAYMENT TO:offspring. potential.” Any stressor can be an insult, AAALIVESTOCK.COM Livestock Market Digest including inferior cow nutrition, Cow longevity and fetal andP.O. can Box cause DNA methylation programming 7458 to occur in the developing fetus. Albuquerque, New Mexico 87194 “If you’re raising replacement The DNA itself cannot change, heifers, it’s imperative to underbut DNA methylation will cause stand the role fetal program-


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ming plays in cow longevity,” ative l nform i says Gunn. “Pregnant cow nutrit s o m est’s herd tion this yearocan affect feruthw S e h tility forT the next eight to twelve years through not only their M daughters, but also their grand and great granddaughters. Since fertility is a primary profitability indicator in cow/calf operations, we can’t overlook the long-term implications of today’s nutritional decisions.” The rule of thumb is that it Please subscrib takes six or seven years for a cow the Livestock Market Dige to break-even and become profitable, but average cow age 1 the Year at $19.95 2 Y in the United States is not six or seven. “If we can keep fetal proNAME gramming in mind when we manage our cows, we’ll develop heifers with more fertility, cow ADDRESS longevity and herd sustainability,” says Gunn.

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PHONE What’s on the horizon?

“Geneticists are trying to establish E-MAIL which genes are most affected through fetal programming and how we might be able to provide therapy to overcome MC VISA DNA methylation due to nutritional deficiencies,” says Gunn. TheNUMBER cattle industry’s current CARD fetal programming knowledge is just the tip of the iceberg—it’s a EXPIRATION concept theDATE industry will continue to research and explore. “I’d love to see us get a better SIGNATURE handle on which specific nutrients have the most positive imEnclosed we’re interpactPayment on phenotypes ested in,” adds Gunn. “And I’d like to learn more about what is for the entire optimal SEND PAYMENT TO: beef production system—not just for Livestock cows today Market or next Digest year, but how toP.O. tailor Boxnutrition 7458 and management to raise better cows and Albuquerque, New Mexico 87194 be more profitable over the next decade and beyond.”


November 15, 2019

Livestock Market Digest

Collectors Corner Becoming a Better Bidder Part 1


receive questions and comments from auction bidders on a regular bases. “Why didn’t I get the item I was trying to bid on?” “Why did someone else get it for the same amount I bid?” “I would have paid that for it!” And dozens of others. I have been around auctions my entire life, having participated as both a buyer and seller. Originally starting off as general help at a livestock auction when young, then graduating to working as a ringman, now I am a licensed auctioneer and own an auction company. I have seen a little bit of everything when it comes to an auction and the nuances involved. One thing for sure, the auction world has changed a lot since the introduction of the internet in the last couple decades. Now-a-days, there are more folks participating in online auctions than at live events. I will address various forms of bidding here with the hope you can gain

some useful tidbit which can be used to your advantage when bidding at an auction. First off, some basics. Most probably already know this, but let’s go over the ways to bid. There is live bidding, phone bidding, absentee bidding, proxy bidding and online there is live and absentee bidding. Now, live bidding is just that, you are sitting in the crowd in front of an auctioneer. Phone bidding is when you are on the phone with a representative from the auction house and telling them what to bid as the auctioneer sells the item. Absentee bidding is when you leave a “max” or maximum bid you are willing to go up to, this can be done online, or through a representative of the auction house (or even by email). Proxy bidding is when you get someone else to bid on your behalf. With regards to the internet, you generally have the option to bid in real time, as the auction is taking place, or absentee as stated above. The first rule of buying at an auction is to have a good idea of

what you are bidding on. Preview, preview, preview. If online, look closely at the pictures. Ask questions ahead of time until you are comfortable. If you buy an item and it is not what you expected, it is your own fault (except in the case of misrepresentation by the auction house or seller, which is another subject). Do not assume anything. Look the items over well and get a pre-determined idea of value in mind. You should always have a dollar amount in mind and be willing to not go over that amount when bidding (unless it is a one of a kind item or something you really, really want). Find out what the Buyer’s premium, taxes and any other fees such as shipping and handling might be. Calculate that into the amount you are willing to pay. Those fees can vary from auction to auction and from region to region, but pretty much any auction is going to charge them in some manner or another. You should also know where the auctioneer is at in the bidding process and what he is asking for in terms of the next dollar amount. It is your responsibility to know what lot they are on and what amount is being asked for. Pay attention. Then be ready to bid up to the amount you had in mind. Now, some pointers for various forms of bidding. When live bidding, bid visibly with your card, paddle or hand. “Sneak” bids can easily be missed by the auction crew. Also, do not hesitate. There are people out there (I have even seen videos on the subject) who coach bidders to wait until the last minute, right before the auctioneer

Page 9 says “SOLD,” to raise your hand and bid. There are several theories behind this, most of which do not hold water. What this can be however, is problematic for bidders. For one, the auctioneer or ringman can miss your bid because they do not think you are interested in this lot. Right or wrong, they tend to focus on the ones who have been bidding on that lot. Even if your strategy is to not show much excitement, at least raise your hand once or twice early on so you are on their radar. If you really want an item, do not wait till the last minute to bid—it may be too late. Also, many auctioneers do not give a “fair warning” call. They ask for and take bids until they figure everyone is done bidding, then they “drop the hammer.” And even if they have been giving a fair warning call all day, it is not required. So if the auctioneer drops the hammer and you did not get your bid in because you were waiting, it is your own fault for missing out. You took that risk. Another side effect of using the strategy of always waiting till the last minute to bid, is you can aggravate the auction crew and attendees. They realize you are playing games and trying to break up the flow of the auction. You will not receive any preferential treatment by aggravating folks. Another thing I have seen which is not recommended, is to raise your hand in the air when you really want an item and just leave it up there. Some think this is smart if you really want an item, just to make sure you get it, no matter what. The problem is, by letting everyone in the room know you want it,

no matter the cost, you can wind up paying more than you should. Unscrupulous auctioneers and ringmen may run you up. Also, there could be folks in the crowd who are ornery and will bid against you just to make you pay more out of meanness. Yes, there are people like that at most auctions. Bid only as necessary when you are outbid. If you are not sure who has the bid, just ask. Point toward yourself in a questioning manner and either the ringman or auctioneer will see you and affirm whether you have the bid or not at that moment. Raise your hand in a steady manner, and only when it is your turn. That is the best way. All of the various games played generally have no bearing on the end result anyway. Items are going to bring what they are going to bring (within a few dollars) whether you are messing with the auctioneer and other bidders or not. All you accomplish when playing games is to alienate others. When bidding on the phone, the same applies as above. Also, make sure you have a good connection and speak loudly. The auction staff on the other end has a lot going on and it is loud, so do not make it hard for them to understand or hear you. Be punctual. Know when the item(s) you are interested in are going to sell (within a few minutes) and be ready ahead of time. Most auctions will not wait more than a few moments to get a phone bidder on the line. Be sure to see part 2 of this story in the December Stockman.

Don’t let Vegetarian Environmentalists Shame You for Eating Meat… Go ahead, grill a burger. Going vegetarian can help our climate a little bit, but it’s an inefficient policy to try to push on people worldwide. BY BJORN LOMBORG, OPINION CONTRIBUTOR /USA TODAY


round the world, we’re being told to stop eating meat. Headlines, think tanks and activists all ask us to change our diet to combat climate change. The Washington D.C.-based World Resource Institute suggests that resource management will require Americans to cut their average consumption of beef by about 40 percent , and scientists from the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom just claimed that “a typical summer barbecue for four people releases more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere than an 80 mile car journey.” One of the professors points out that “the production of a 100g medium-sized beef burger releases enough greenhouses gases to fill more than 60 balloons.” The scientists propose a solution: we all need to replace our burgers with “veggie sausages,” swap the cheese for half an onion and replace the butter with “vegetable spread”. Voila: half the emissions. I’m a vegetarian myself for ethical reasons, but the climate scientists’ barbecue prescription leaves me with a bad taste in my mouth — and it is not just the vegetable spread.

Social pressure to hold the steak After years of failed global attempts to cut carbon emissions meaningfully, some activists are propagating the idea that everyone on the planet should go vegetarian or even vegan. It’s interesting to note that even environmentalists themselves are loathe to make the major lifestyle changes that would be required to avoid all meat products. A recent survey found that most of the UK Green Party’s elected representatives are in fact meat-eaters, with considerable disagreement on how important vegetarianism is in combating climate change, ranging from those who believe that it’s the biggest personal contribution anyone can make, to more sensible politicians who see veganism is a fad. But the environmentalists calling on us to go vegan seem to somehow get the most airtime. Perhaps it’s the extreme things they say: The former head of the United Nations’ climate change organization, for example, suggested that meat-eaters should be made to feel like pariahs. “How about restaurants in 10 to 15 years start treating carnivores in the same way that smokers are treated?” The idea of forcing carnivores to eat outside in the rain might be an interesting conversation starter in Bonn, Germany, where the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change is based, but it blithely ignores the reality that elsewhere on the planet, 1.45 billion people are

vegetarians today not because they prefer veggie burgers, but because of poverty. Those people desperately want to be able to afford meat. There’s an even more fundamental problem with the idea that we replace steak dinners with tomato steaks. The truth is we can’t stop temperature rises with our diets.

Vegetarians lose on practicality We’re often told that going vegetarian is the biggest thing that any of us could do, with headlines telling us: “Cut your carbon footprint in half by going vegetarian.” Statements like that are misleading for two reasons. First, that cut isn’t to our entire emissions — just those from food. That means four-fifths of emissions are ignored, according to an analysis of emission from the European Union, which means the impact is actually fivetimes lower. Second, the more optimistic figures about how much of your emissions you can cut are based not just on a vegetarian diet, but on an entirely vegan one where we avoid every single animal product altogether. A systematic peer-review of studies of going vegetarian shows that a non-meat diet will likely reduce an individual’s emissions by the equivalent of nearly 1,200 lbs carbon dioxide. For the average person in the industrialized world, that means an emissions cut of just 4.3 percent. This still overstates the effect, because it ignores the well-established “rebound ef-

fect.” Vegetarian diets are slightly cheaper, and saved money will likely be spent on other goods and services that cause extra greenhouse gas emissions. In the U.S., vegetarians save at least $750 on their food budgets every year. That extra spending will cause more carbon dioxide emissions, cancelling about half the saved carbon emissions from going vegetarian. In a first world setting, the reality is that going entirely vegetarian for the rest of your life means you reduce your emissions by about two percent, according to a study of the environmental impact of Swedish vegetarians.

To put this into context: either you could go vegetarian for the rest of your life, or you could reduce your emissions by the exact same amount by spending a little more than $3 a year using the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, the first mandatory market-based program in the United States covering several states to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Given all of this, it seems downright mean-spirited of the University of Manchester scientists to try to shame people for having a summer barbecue. Bjorn Lomborg is president of the Copenhagen Consensus Center and visiting professor at Copenhagen Business School.

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Livestock Market Digest

An Attack on Westerners and Freedom of Speech The Hearing


n the very day I am writing this column, a subcommittee of the House Committee on Natural Resources is scheduled to hold a hearing, the title of which is No More Standoffs: Protecting Federal Employees And Ending The Culture Of Anti-Government Attacks And Abuse.

And some think elections don’t matter? Look at what the Committee posted on their Facebook page three days before the hearing: “Extremists – sometimes encouraged by elected officials – treat our federal employees as enemies and subject them to illegal threats and abuse. The people who protect the public lands we all love need protec-


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tion themselves, especially when anti-government rhetoric leads to real physical abuse. Join us at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 22, for our hearing on combating anti-government extremism in all its forms and protecting our Public Lands.” This is what the Committee posted on the day before the hearing: “Remember the heavily armed Bundy militia taking over Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon a few years ago? Public Lands managers have faced HUNDREDS of threats, attacks and even murder attempts over the past few years. We’re holding a hearing on Tuesday at 2:00 p.m. Eastern on the serious human consequences of anti-government rhetoric.” I wonder if they believe pro-government rhetoric is just as dangerous? There are three non-agency witnesses scheduled to testify, and their written testimony does not reflect the hyperbole used by the Committee majority. The first scheduled to testify is County Commissioner and rancher Dan Nichols, who opposed the takeover of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge and is no friend of the Bundys. In his written testimony, Nichols says: “There are lessons to be learned from the armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, as well as Harney Counties experiences with the government’s management of public lands resources. It is important to note that the majority of ranchers in Harney County did not support armed occupation of the Refuge. But at the same time, there are legitimate grievances with federal land management policies. Without a forum in which to air and address these concerns – and a fair, collaborative process by which to resolve them – we continue to push more people toward the hostile, unacceptable approaches adopted by individuals such as the Bundys. Much of what is often described as being “antigovernment” is really coming from a place of feeling excluded or on the losing end of unbalanced natural resource management.” The second person scheduled to testify is Dr. Peter Walker, a professor of Geography and Environmental Studies at the University of Oregon, and the author of


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the book Sagebrush Collaboration: How Harney County Defeated the Takeover of the Malheur National Refuge. In his written testimony, the professor makes two points of interest. First, Dr. Walker states: “It is important to note that while the media at the time often described the militants as ranchers, in fact only one of the outside militant leaders, and only two active local supporters, could even plausibly be described as working ranchers. The overwhelming majority of outside militants and local supporters had no direct interactions with federal resource management agencies. The occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge was primarily an ideologically-based anti-federal government political movement, not a movement of ranchers, loggers, or other resource users.” Dr. Walker asserts, “As a nation we are enormously fortunate that by chance the militants chose Harney County.” Why? Because, “the outside militants had no idea Harney County was recognized nationally as something of a poster child for collaborative approaches, including building positive relationships with federal workers.” One can only speculate what the final outcome would have been had the occupiers selected a different area in the West. The third non-agency presenter was Katie Tubb with the Heritage Foundation, who explained why there is so much potential for conflict in the management of federal lands: “…management of these massive and diverse lands is disjointed, being spread across multiple departments and bureaus governed by a complex of overlapping and often conflicting laws, missions, and regulations as well as historical uses and arrangements predating certain federal laws. Different administrations have interpreted and implemented the same laws guiding management in drastically different ways to either encourage access to federal lands or heavily restrict their use. Special interest groups leverage these complexities to pressure elected leaders and bureaucrats to enact policies that benefit powerful constituencies. A litigation culture all but invited by broad, unclear, or outdated laws has led to perverse

incentives.” Notice her testimony does not list “anti-government rhetoric” as a significant or primary cause of conflict. Ms. Tubb uses the rest of her testimony to provide many examples of instances where local groups and entities have come together to resolve conflicts. The hearing was chaired by Rep. Deb Haaland (D-NM). In her opening statement, Rep. Haaland unfortunately chose to emphasize the theme of “anti-government rhetoric” and launched a partisan attack on Senators Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) and Dean Heller (R-Nev.) for some of their public statements and on former Utah Governor Gary Herbert for signing land transfer legislation, and by implication blaming them for contributing to the “culture of threats and violence.” Ranking minority member John Curtis (R-Utah) was having none of this. In his opening statement Rep. Curtis took issue with the “assertion there is a widespread problem of anti-government threats and abuse occurring in the West.” Rep. Curtis stated that “calling for local ownership and control of public lands does not embody an attack on the federal government” and that “the vast majority of my constituents impacted by federal land management decisions are hardworking taxpayers raising families and contributing to their communities.” “Land owners and users who disagree with specific management decisions should not be made to feel that somehow they will be placed on a government watch list” said Rep. Curtis, and “vilifying Westerners and those who disagree with federal management decisions” does nothing to contribute to the proper stewardship of the land. Clearly this hearing was designed to be part of the larger left-wing attempts to silence those who disagree with current government policy, and it is sad to see Rep. Haaland participate in this effort to limit diversity of opinion on public issues. Until next time, be a nuisance to the devil and don’t forget to check that cinch. Frank DuBois was the NM Secretary of Agriculture from 1988 to 2003, is the author of a blog: The Westerner (www.thewesterner.blogspot. com) and is the founder of The DuBois Rodeo Scholarship and The DuBois Western Heritage Foundation

You’ve Got a Name

Build it up by finding answers for your calves BY MORGAN MARLEY

R.L. Robbs

November 15, 2019


uyers know your calves by their history and connect that to your name. Sometimes it’s all they know about you, good or bad. With a “good name,” you can make deals by phone, sealed with a handshake. Not preparing or knowing how calves perform after weaning keeps a lid on sale prices. “It takes several years to build your reputation,” says Bo Bevis, an agent for Northern Livestock Video Auction in Montana and buyer for Lamberton (Minn.) Stockyards. To the south, Joplin (Mo.) Regional Stockyards co-owner Jackie Moore says, “The cattle speak for themselves and the producer. After cattlemen get into a routine, the buyer sitting there has most likely been purchasing your calves for a long time.”

Since postweaning performance depends so much on genetics, reputations for commercial ranchers often link to their bull suppliers. “Seedstock customers are the commercial cattlemen, and their customers are the feeders,” Bevis says. Options for all include livestock auctions or “sale barns,” satellite-video auctions, or direct deals with feedyards. Your management may determine the best marketing channels. Along the way are many questions that even those with the best reputations had to start with.

How should I market my calves? Livestock auctions are the traditional way. At a basic level, you can load them up and take them to town a day or hours before the sale and wait for your check. Anyone can sell there, and it may be the only option for small operations or groups of uneven calves.

“The folks at the sale barn will sort out the light ones,” Bevis says. “There will be smaller packages with the same size and color steers. That’s where the order buyer bids on them and puts purchases together in packages.” Livestock auctions often provide much more sophisticated services as well, and remain a solid way to build a reputation, Moore notes. Video auction sales require enough calves to make a load. “A load is anywhere from 48,000 to 64,000 pounds,” Bevis says. “You want to have like kind, but oftentimes there are mixed loads where it’s steers and heifers.” The average U.S. beef herd of 40 head isn’t big enough without cooperative “pooling,” or partnering with neighbors to make up enough calves for a load. It’s not common but a good option for some, he says. continued on page eleven

November 15, 2019

Livestock Market Digest


A Sheep Thanksgiving


or some reason this Thanksgiving, I’m thinking of sheep. The sheep industry is havin’ a fair year. One factor is lamb being included and advertised in specialty dog food. The sheepman’s equivalent market to fast food burgers. How to strengthen the market, you ask? Breed more

dogs, you say? Or get humans in Canada and the U.S. to eat more sheep and wear more wool? So how do you get people to buy more lamb? You either change the people or change the product. We are living in a time of unimaginable technology involving gene tinkering. What if it were possible to change

the animal by gene splicing. Say something as simple as changing the color of wool. How ‘bout a palomino gene to produce the much sought after Golden Fleece or a leopard gene to get a spotted virgin wool jacket. Or even a Scotchman’s gene to produce a fleece that’s already plaid? I can envision wool t-shirts with logos or rock stars already on the sheep. Sheep have never been considered a beast of burden, a burden perhaps, but never a beast of burden. As is, they could be enlisted to carry light loads. Pack saddles or panniers would require no cinches or straps. Just velcro the equipment directly to the wool. Certainly we could gene splice in some mule parts or camel humps. We could wind

Page 11

up with a quarter horse that has its own saddle pad or a sheep with feet like a Clydesdale. Many animals are raised for the purpose of milk production. Cows, of course, and goats. By gene splicing we could get a 120 lb. critter covered with black and white wool and a bag the size of overalls on a dirigible. With only two teats it would halve the expense of costly udder inflation replacements. This would lead to the use of hippopotamus gene splicing so the calves mouths would be big enough. Which would result in better consumption because the shippocow could eat more in less time. And finally we would be able to attack the biggest problem the sheep industry one likes to eat it. We could lit-

NAME One benefit of the video auction can be its ability to capture typically strong, early summer markets that livestock auctions can’t provide real-time.

When should I sell? Your first concern is managing cattle, but getting paid well means understanding the market. “If a producer is going into it blind and going into it brand new in the cattle business, my advice would be to look at a 15-year trend,” Bevis says. “See where the chosen marketing month peaks and just go off of that. I tell my customers all the time, do not chase markets.” Prices move up and down seasonally by class, as any veteran marketer knows. “Pay attention to what’s going on within the market and study how it works,” Moore advises. “Learn where the highs are for certain types of cattle and the lows for certain types of cattle. Try to hit those high times with your calves if they fit.” For example, a 900-pound steer sells well just after Thanksgiving because it will be an April fat steer. The market traditionally sees finished cattle selling highest in February through April with lows from July to October. Those seasonal trends reflect what’s happening on the ranch. Most calves arrive in the spring and sell after weaning in October and November. “There’s always a glut of them,” Moore says, so prices are going to be lower then. “It’s just the way it works. People who sell then are always hitting a bad market.”

How soon do I make contact? After you’ve made it through branding and processing, you have a headcount on the number of steers and heifers you can gather in a few months. That’s a good time to contact feedyards, sales agents or “reps” and find the best marketing channels. Marketing professionals provide insight beyond what the typical farmer or rancher has time to judge regarding short- and longterm opportunities. Even that basic plan to simply drop calves off at the livestock auction works best if you give them two or three days’ notice. A step up is to include that market manager earlier as you research options because livestock auctions regularly promote premium-quality offerings. “A lot of people are spur-ofthe-moment sellers,” Moore says.

erally pick the flavor we wanted and splice it in. We could make the meat taste like catfish, chocolate, beef, butter, pumpkin pie, cranberry sauce, dressing, and yes, even turkey! Which gets me back to Thanksgiving. Someday we might be able to offer a leg-o-lamb that tastes like everything on the Thanksgiving table! Call it shurkey. The possibilities are endless. Easter sham, backyard sheef burgers, shicken cordon blue, shoysters on the halfshell, a wildgame feed with shelk, sheer and shantelope, a shuffalo robe, a shink coat, shackaroni and sheeze, shangaroo tail, a singing sharakeet, and sheep....uh, grits. I better schtop now…!

continued from page ten

“Another thing is, when the market looks like it is gonna be up $5 or $10, well that’s a pretty good selling point.” If you decided to put those calves in a video auction the timeline advances several weeks or more, the sooner the better. What’s the latest? “If you’re putting them on the video auction, we need to have that paperwork in a week ahead of time,” Moore says. Your rep isn’t just there to promote your cattle on sale day. “It takes a lot of time and a lot of phone calls,” Bevis says. He stays in touch with customers throughout the year, especially in marketing seasons to make sure he gets the video work lined up and calves where they need to be.

How can calves look their best? Mother Nature can sometimes swoop in and steal the show just before a sale or video, taking calves from full to wrungout in short order. And they need to look their best for prospective buyers, says Moore. “It’s all a visual thing, so you do whatever it takes.” That can mean taking a rain check on the video or waiting to sell, but there’s also a bigger picture in the calendar. “I like to get a little more growth on them before I get them on video,” Bevis says. “I like to film the cattle on green grass.

It’s just aesthetics, and cattle look a lot better walking across a green field than they do a brown field.” That’s another reason to contact a video rep sooner. Capturing calves at their best on camera means choosing the right age and size, and fitting the shoot into open weather. Video auction sales include a price slide to ensure fairness because weights are estimated for the future delivery. A listing might say calves will weigh 800 pounds (lb.) and sell with an $.08/lb. slide. If they sell at $1.40/ lb. but weigh 840 after shrink, the difference of 40 X 8 means subtracting $.032, so the sale price of $136.80/cwt. yields a net price of $1,149.12 per head. The slide would add a similar amount to the price per pound if they were 40 lb. lighter than estimate. “We need a slide in there to adjust the price because an 840or 850-lb. steer is not worth near as much per pound as one that weighs a smooth 800 lb.”

primed immune systems. The vaccination protocol pays its way, in 2019 stacking up another $6 to $7/cwt., Bevis says. Add 45-day preconditioning (a key standard for “weaned”) and there’s more value. “A weaned calf is worth about $10 or $15/cwt. more than a nonweaned one,” Moore says. In some areas, the recommendation is 60 days weaned, says Brandon Myers, owner of Cattlemen’s Livestock Exchange, Caldwell, W.V. “We suggest the longer preconditioning period because with so many smaller producers, we have more frequent comingling,” he says. In an industry where health maintenance is the highest cost, it pays to work with your veterinarian to develop a vaccination program for any preconditioning period and ready for whatever comes next at the feedyard.

How can I keep them healthy?

You want the sale-barn bidder and buyers to know as much as possible about your calves. There are opportunities to share their resume when alerting the sale manager your calves are coming in, and again when checking them in. “We’ll convey that along to the buyers out of the auction block,” Moore says. “We’ll announce what shots they’ve had

“Health is the most important thing in calves to any feeder,” Bevis says, suggesting a “rigorous” health and mineral program. Yard managers comingle cattle from widely different sources, and successful adapting takes strict adherence to vaccination regimes. That’s why feedyards demand vaccinated calves with

How do I convey information?

or the genetics that were used.” On the video auction, that information is in the auction book and read off before the cattle sell. Either way, the key is to contact the sales agent in time for them to help sell your calves so as to get the most value.

Are there value-added sales? Those who go the extra mile may do well to set up a direct marketing channel with a feedyard. Another option is the value-added “special sale” where order-buyers fill premium orders for those yards. “It’s just a way of tracking the information and keeping a more accurate record of it,” Moore explains. Some of the popular value-added premiums are for all-natural, or non-hormone-treated cattle (NHTC) or certified under the Global Animal Partnership (GAP) for animal welfare. “To enroll your cattle in those you’ve got to months out ahead of marketing your calves,” Bevis says. Conversations with your sales reps can help find the program that is most relevant for your management and genetics. Bevis takes it as his responsibility to help ranchers find the premiums that will help “bring in a few extra dollars.”

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Livestock Market Digest

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