Grazing the Net
Greg Henderson and Friends
Our editors spend some time roaming the web looking for stuff cattle people and others in agriculture might find useful or entertaining.
Organic Egg Irony
Mar 03, 2014
There's a shortage of organic eggs across the country, and the shortfall draws attention to an ironic and spectacularly silly phenomenon. National Public Radio's food blog, The Salt, reports that demand for organic eggs is rising at the same time supply dwindles. The supply problem can be traced to the fact that America's farmers don't produce enough organic corn and soybeans to feed our organic chicken flock. Therefore, organic egg producers are forced to import organic corn and soybeans from places like China, India and Argentina. That's right, the U.S. exports soybeans to China, and they ship us organic soybeans so we can claim sustainability and save the planet by eating expensive organic eggs. You can't make this stuff up!
Wet or Dry, Warm or Hot?
The bitter winter of 2014 seems to reinforce the reality that man's attempts to forecast weather is only mildly successful. Still, as spring approaches farmers and ranchers are anxious to find clues about the upcoming growing season. Will it be wet or dry, warm or hot? The NOAA's Climate Prediction Center sees a hot summer ahead, while an independent weather service finds evidence of a drought brewing for the Central U.S.
Other meteorologists see hope in a developing El Niño, nature's most powerful influence on weather around the globe. Observations and computer models show increasing signs of El Niño's return, which might portend more rain for California.
Cattle Markets Set Another Record
Cash fed cattle prices posted $5 to $6 gains last week, with trading at $152 per cwt. in the North and $150 in the South. Yearling feeder cattle sold unevenly steady with noted pressure on those over 850 pounds. Calves were called steady to $5 per cwt. higher. USDA Market News reporter Corbitt Wall says there were "crazy prices again this week."
Is That a Bull in the Corn Market?
After many dismal months, there is now plenty of positive news coming out of the corn and soybean markets. "You have to go back to September to see prices this high," says Jerry Gulke, president of the Gulke Group.