Kansas Junior Livestock Show coming to fairgrounds
HUTCHINSON, Kan. — Even though the Kansas State Fair will end Sunday, that doesn’t mean the grounds will be empty for very long.
The Kansas Junior Livestock Show will host 772 4-H and FFA members from 97 counties for the statewide event at the Kansas State Fairgrounds later this month.
Sam Capoun with the Kansas Livestock Association, one of the event’s major sponsors, broke down the livestock numbers.
“Exhibitors have entered 1,906 head of livestock,” Capoun said. “That includes 134 market steers, 333 breeding heifers, 230 market hogs, 271 breeding gilts, 275 markets lambs, 197 market goats and 178 commercial doe kids as examples.”
Capoun also talked about prizes that will be awarded during this show coming to Hutchinson.
“This show will award cash to exhibitors to the top five animals in both market and breeding shows for all four species,” Capoun said. A showmanship contest will also be held with the winners in each division receiving a silver belt buckle.
The event is Sept. 27 through Sept. 29 on the Kansas State Fairgrounds.
Experts from around the world address livestock production, climate and natural resources
MANHATTAN, Kan. – When conversations turn to the world’s climate and natural resources they often also go to livestock production. And that’s the idea behind a session at the Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock international meeting hosted by Kansas State University, Sept. 9-13, 2019.
The topic, Climate and Natural Resource Use were one of several addressed as GASL delegates from around the world convened to talk about opportunities and challenges for livestock producers in countries large and small.
A growing number of countries have identified livestock as an important topic in larger climate discussions including the role of methane, said Henning Steinfeld, with the Food and Agriculture Organization. He noted that from smallholder farms, with just a few heads of livestock, to intensive cattle feedlots with thousands of cattle, there’s a huge diversity with what resources are used.
Part of the discussion, Steinfeld said, should also be that many grasslands are healthier if they’re grazed and that domestic animals play a role. Also, pastures can act as a carbon sink.
There’s a growing move toward intensive livestock production, he said, which offers greater efficiency but among the challenges with that is a reliance on soy as a feed ingredient. Some producers are looking for alternative feeds.
Considerations in livestock production are its contribution to the food supply and food security with an eye toward the environmental impacts.
The Climate and Natural Resource Use session was designed for delegates to hear different viewpoints, including innovations in livestock production.
Steinfeld said some of the innovations being explored are better efficiency in decreasing methane emission intensity; better use of nutrients, water and energy – “a nice synergy” – and the use of animal waste.
Ian McConnell with the World Wildlife Fund International, offered a response. The WWF produces the “Living Planet Report” which he said shows the state of the planet is declining and that food production and particularly livestock are a large part of that decline.
There’s a need to initially stop the decline of the climate, he said, noting that most of the meat globally is produced in intensive systems, so that while there are gains in nutrition, there has been a net environmental loss. He encouraged delegates to “take ownership” of the challenges in livestock production and take the lead in coming up with solutions.
“We have a large land footprint but it’s not always a degradation of land,” he said. “We need to redefine what our footprints are. We won’t solve it right away.” He added that waiting to be proactive could make the livestock sector vulnerable.
In an “Innovation in Action” segment, Tom Jones with Hy-Plains Feedyard in Montezuma, Kansas, gave examples of how an intensive operation with a capacity of 50,000 cattle is addressing environmental challenges.
Hy-Plains has sharpened focus on water conservation in the last four years, including limited irrigation in its cropping systems. Through genetic selection, it’s also choosing cattle that use feed more efficiently.
Though corn is a primary ingredient in livestock feed, its requirements for water have Hy-Plains considering other feed ingredients such as sorghum that requires less water but is different nutritionally.
Jones said the feed yard is changing traditional cattle feeding strategies by:
- Communicating with producers about vaccination prior to when they enter the feedlot in order to reduce pharmaceuticals through the animal’s life.
- Sorting and managing animals to target optimal finish time and end-product specifications.
- Use genetics to produce cattle that achieve quality grade choice or higher.
- Optimize land use to grow cattle heavier and more cost-effective prior to arriving at feed yard.
Hy-Plains is also actively promoting soil health and has made gains toward becoming carbon neutral, Jones said, by improving soil health through using crop rotations, cover crops and other practices. “I think it’s doable in Kansas,” he said.
In another “Innovation in Action” presentation by Walter Oyhantcabal with the Ministry of Livestock Agriculture and Fisheries in Uruguay, Oyhantcabal said Uruguay’s economy is largely based on livestock and that most cattle are grass-fed.
Uruguay’s government has implemented mandatory traceability of cattle, growth promotions are prohibited by law, and there is no change in land use (no deforestation). However, almost 75% of greenhouse gas emissions come from agriculture, mostly livestock.
Government policies have set three targets: More food and fiber, less environmental footprint and mitigation of and adaptation to climate change. To achieve those, the country established a new paradigm to guide changes in the livestock sector to support economic, social, welfare, biodiversity, soil fertility, and the ecosystem. He cited grazing management as one area of focus.
Uruguay is the first developing country to set mitigation targets in terms of emissions intensity in the beef sector, with goals of 33% less methane by 2030 unconditionally, compared with 1990, and 31% less nitrous oxide.
An additional perspective was provided by Mario Herroro, with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation and the University of Queensland who said, “We are reaching a global convergence on the need for more sustainable food production systems.” He cited a recent Lancet report on making fruits and vegetables the primary star of the plate.
What’s feasible now, Herroro said, is a disruptive innovation, some of which could be applied to the livestock sector, such as using plant substitutes, new feeds, algae, and microbial protein from sewage and waste as animal feed and among others possibilities.
“It will be expensive at the beginning, but the prices will come down,” Herroro said.
Going to the dogs: ‘Beef Production and the Working Cow Dog’ meeting
LYNDON, Kan. – K-State Research and Extension Coffey County and the Frontier Extension District together will host a meeting, “Beef Production and the Working Cow Dog” Oct. 8 in Williamsburg, Kansas. The meeting starts at 10:00 a.m. at the Williamsburg Community Building.
A complimentary meal will be served, thanks to sponsors, but participants are asked to register by Oct. 3 to ensure an accurate meal count. Register at: www.frontierdistrict.k-state.edu or call the Coffey County Extension Office at 620-364-5313 or Frontier District Office in Lyndon at 785-828-4438.
“A cattle dog is a valuable asset to many cattle operations. They can help ranchers through the daily work of raising cattle,” said Rod Schaub, extension agent with the Frontier District.
Presentations will feature Debbie Lyons Blythe, Blythe Angus Ranch and chairman of the Outreach Committee of the U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef, and Patti Dollarhide, value chain director of Kansas State University’s Beef Cattle Institute.
The U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (USRSB) is a multi-stakeholder organization whose 116 members represent 30% of the nation’s cattle herd, more than 20 billion pounds of beef processed and more than 100 million consumers. Its goal is to identify opportunities for continuous improvement throughout the beef industry.
The USRSB recently developed the U.S. Beef Industry Sustainability Framework that was adopted by major food and retail companies, cattle producers, veterinarians, scientists and non-government organizations to strengthen the sustainability of U.S beef production. According to USRSB Chair, Dr. Kim Stackhouse, “The U.S. Beef Industry Sustainability Framework is about telling that story to consumers by improving transparency as well as exploring opportunities to more responsibly use resources, raise animals and care for the people who help beef get to the American dinner table.”
Laura Stimatze, of Stimatze Working Cow Dogs, Macksville, Kansas, will give a presentation on the possibilities and abilities of a working stock dog.
After lunch, participants will travel to Silkville Ranch where Stimatze will continue her discussion on using cow dogs in a low-stress manner to work cattle. Demonstrations of dogs with various levels of training will occur throughout the afternoon. Selecting the right dog or puppy, finding the right trainer, and getting started on training a dog will be discussed.
KDA Appoints Marketing Advisory Board Members
MANHATTAN, Kan. — Six Kansans have been appointed by Secretary of Agriculture Mike Beam to serve on the Kansas Department of Agriculture’s Marketing Advisory Board. Board service will begin on September 12.
The Marketing Advisory Board provides constituent observation and comment for a variety of industry sector strategies supporting agriculture business development, international agricultural development/trade, From the Land of Kansas trademark program, local foods and affiliated programs, agricultural workforce development, and agricultural education.
“Continuing to receive feedback from Kansans engaged in the agriculture sectors is a high priority as we work to remain relevant with today’s market dynamics. We welcome these advisory board members,” said Beam. “They will be great contributors to the agriculture marketing team which is charged with developing and conducting market development activities for Kansas agricultural commodities and food products.”
Newly appointed members include: Kyle Antenen, farmer/rancher, Ness City; Mike Bergmeier, ShieldAg Equipment, Hutchinson; Brice Elnicki, Producer’s Cooperative Association, Girard; Janice Nikkel, Mill Brae Ranch, Maple Hill; Mallory Shinliver, Helena Agri-Enterprises, Nashville; and Brian Zitlow, Great Western Bank, Shawnee.
The Kansas Department of Agriculture’s purpose is to serve, promote and grow the state’s largest industry. The Division of Agriculture Marketing advocates for and promotes agriculture across the state and works to provide an environment that enhances and encourages economic growth of the agriculture industry and the Kansas economy. For a full list of all advisory board members, go to agriculture.ks.gov/MarketingAdvisoryBoard.
K-State Beef Stocker field day set for September 19
MANHATTAN, Kan. – Health management of high-risk calves, humane euthanasia practices, beef cattle market outlook and a panel discussion on beef parasite control are among the topics planned for the Kansas State University Beef Stocker Field Day on Thursday, Sept. 19.
“We are excited to host the 20th annual edition of the KSU Beef Stocker Field Day,” said Dale Blasi, a professor of animal sciences and beef cattle extension specialist. “Like all the other events in the past, we bring the latest information on marketing, nutrition, health and technology for attendees to apply to their operation.”
Hosted at the K-State Beef Stocker Unit (4330 Marlatt Ave. in Manhattan), the event starts with registration and coffee at 9:30 a.m. and the program at 10:15 a.m. Niman Ranch will provide a prime ribeye lunch, and the day ends with an evening social featuring prairie oysters and Call Hall ice cream.
Attendees will have a chance to win door prizes, including a fishing trip, ATV sprayers and more. Attendees can also tour the new student housing at the Beef Stocker Unit.
Topics for this year’s agenda include
Beef Cattle Market Outlook
Changing Industry Structure is Forging a Closer Relationship Between Grow Yards and Feeders
Internal Parasite Management
Quality Stocker Production Considerations
Humane Euthanasia Practices
BeefBasis: Better Information for Better Marketing Decisions
Health Management of High-Risk Calves
Panel Discussion: Beef Parasite Control
This year’s event is sponsored by Bayer Animal Health. The pre-registration fee is $25 if paid by Sept. 10. More information and online registration is available at KSUBeef.org. After Sept. 10, attendees must pay $35 on site.
For more information, contact Lois Schreiner at 785-532-1267 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information and locations, visit www.kwo.ks.gov.