Beef Market Advisor

Monday, March 08, 2004

USDA Reopens Comment Period On BSE Border Issue

USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service ((APHIS) announced Thursday reopening of the comment period on the proposed rule to amend the regulations regarding importation of animals and animal products from countries that have had isolated cases of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). The proposed rule would include Canada in a category of regions that present a minimal risk.

The proposed rule was first issued on Oct. 31, 2003, before the discovery of a BSE-infected cow in Washington state and the implementation of amelioration measures announced Dec. 30. The initial comment period closed Jan. 5, 2004.

In the rule, APHIS proposed to allow the importation of certain low-risk live ruminants and ruminant products and by-products from minimal risk regions under certain conditions. This action will allow interested persons additional time to prepare and submit comments. This notice also requests comments on whether to allow importation from BSE minimal risk regions of beef from cattle 30 months of age or older in which the specified risk materials have been removed.

Also, APHIS has prepared an explanatory note discussing the detection of the Washington BSE case and its effect on the risk analysis conducted for the proposed rule. Both the original analysis and the explanatory note are available on the APHIS Web site at .

Notice of the extension is scheduled for publication in the March 8 Federal Register. APHIS documents published in the Federal Register and related information, including the names of organizations and individuals who have commented on APHIS dockets, are available at .

The deadline for comments is April 7, and may be submitted by postal mail, commercial delivery or e-mail. Send an original and three copies of postal mail or commercial delivery comments to Docket No. 03-080-2, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3C71, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD, 20730-1238. For e-mail, address comments to . Comments must be contained in the body of the message; do not send attached files. Include your name and address in the message and use "Docket No. 03-080-2" on the subject line.
-- APHIS news release

posted by Dr. Harlan Hughes 10:11 AM [edit]

Beef Improvement Federation Sets May 25-28 Meeting

The 2004 Beef Improvement Federation (BIF) annual meeting is set for May 25-28 at the Sioux Falls, SD, Convention Center. Among the topics for the BIF's 36th annual meeting are:

A May 25, 7 p.m. session on developing technologies in animal agriculture includes a look at reproductive technologies, transgenics, and DNA fingerprinting and marker-assisted selection.

A May 26, 8:15 a.m. session looks at costs and potential profits of new technologies. A 10:15 a.m. session looks at leverage points for profit. Roundtable discussions at 2 p.m. focus on genetic prediction, producer application, and live animal, carcass and endpoint.

A May 27, 8 a.m. session discusses expectations of end users, and the costs of meeting consumer demands. At 10:30 a.m., the topic is the NCBA's Tenderness Project. Roundtable discussions at 2 p.m. deal with cow herd efficiency, emerging technologies and selection decisions.
The conference also features two May 28 tours of area beef operations and companies that service the beef industry.

Register online at or ask for registration brochures at any county Extension office. Full registration costs $100. Registration is $85 for spouses and $65 for students. Send checks by May 1 to South Dakota Cattlemen's Association -- BIF, 435 S. Chapelle Ave., Pierre, SD 57501.

For more details, contact South Dakota State University (SDSU) Extension beef specialist Cody Wright at 605/688-5448, or Justin Stockall of the South Dakota Cattlemen's Association (SDCA) at 605/945-2333. SDSU, the South Dakota Cooperative Extension Service, and the SDCA are the conference sponsors.

posted by Dr. Harlan Hughes 10:10 AM [edit]

A Glossary Of Feedlot Terms For Cow-Calf Producers

Greg Lardy, North Dakota State University beef specialist, has assembled "A Cattleman's Guide To Feedlot Lingo." It's a helpful list of common feedlot terms intended to familiarize cow-calf producers with the lingo and jargon that may be used by feedlot managers when discussing custom feeding and feedlots. You can find it by clicking on: .

posted by Dr. Harlan Hughes 10:07 AM [edit]


Glenn Grimes & Ron Plain
Ag Econ, University of Missouri

March 5, 2004

This was a very good week for cattle. Slaughter prices were higher
for the fourth consecutive week and on Wednesday Mexico announced
they would start importing boneless beef from U.S. cattle
slaughtered before 30 months of age.

The 5-area daily weighted average price for slaughter steers sold
through Thursday was $84.96/cwt on a live weight basis, up $3.09
from a week earlier and $8 higher than a year ago. Steers sold on a
dressed basis averaged $135.14/cwt, $4 higher than the week before
and $12.26 higher than the same week in 2003.

USDA's estimate for this week's federally inspected cattle slaughter
is 615,000 head, down 3.8% compared to the same week a year ago.
This was the 24th consecutive week with slaughter below year-ago

Year-to-date cattle slaughter is down 10.2% and year-to-date beef
production is down 11.6%. Dressed weights have stayed far below
year-ago levels as feeders hurry cattle to slaughter to take
advantage of high fed cattle prices. For the week ending February
21, steer carcasses were 25 pounds lighter than a year ago and
heifer carcasses were 31 pounds lighter than for the corresponding
week in 2003. That's more than a 3% reduction in beef production
per animal.

Strong consumer demand, light slaughter weights and reduced
slaughter has given us strong cattle prices despite the BSE driven
drop in exports. Other than Japan, Mexico was our biggest foreign
customer for beef last year. Exports to Mexico equaled 2.24% of
U.S. beef production in 2003.

At midday Friday, the choice carcass cutout value was calculated at
$1.4175/pound, up 7 cents for the week. The select cutout was up
7.52 cents from the previous Friday to $1.3438 per pound. Higher
cutout values and light carcass weight put packers in position to
keep fed cattle price moving higher.

The April live cattle contract closed Friday at $79.22, up $2.37 for
the week. June settled at $74.32, up $1.40 from the week before.
August settled at $73.15 and October closed at $75.70/cwt.

Despite corn prices close to $3 per bushel, feeder cattle prices are
well above year-ago levels. Oklahoma City this week were called
$2-3 higher at: 500-600# $103.50-$117, 600-700# $94.25-$106.50,
700-800# $86.75-$95.75, 800-1000# $80.75-$89.25/cwt.

posted by Dr. Harlan Hughes 10:04 AM [edit]

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