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.
Teach Your Cows to Drink Less
Sep 16, 2013
Ouch. Umm ... huh? That's our early thoughts on an article on Daily Kos saying cattle production is the driving force for the depletion of the Ogallala aquifer. The writer cites a Kansas State study highlighting the reduced underground water supply. Ok, yes, we know there is less underground water. The problem is real. All industries need to see what can be done to reduce water usage. But to place the blame solely on the livestock industry? Have they lost their minds?
Do they drive a car? Are they even vaguely familiar with the term "ethanol?" What about power plants? Growing communities? Swimming pools? Perhaps in an effort to protect our water supply, they want to promote vegetarianism. What about soybeans? Oh, that's right. Tofu just comes from the grocery store.
Perhaps Keenan Bishop, author of an editorial in the State Journal titled "What if Cows Roamed Free" should take the Daily Kos writer out to lunch. We're not sure if anyone could get through the thick skull at Daily Kos, but Bishop might at least give him something to think about.
Are you a 10%-er?
You know those signs you see at the gas pump tht say "May contain up to 10% ethanol." If your corner gas station doesn't have one, it may in the near future as Bloomberg reports ethanol's discount to gasoline expands as corn prices sink. Price drops are a result of the latest USDA crop outlook.
Here's the USDA's take on livestock supply estimates.
The next time you complain about the cost of a gallon of gas, consider this: in the U.S., it takes an average of 2.6% of a day's wage to buy a gallon of gas. Compare that to other countries like Indonesia, where it takes 34% of a day's earnings to buy a gallon. Or in Turkey, where a single gallon of gas is $9.55. This website offers the interesting comparisons.
The Blaze takes a look at the unintended consequences of the ethanol mandate, specifically higher food prices.
Containing Our Enthusiasm
An exciting week! That's what Agri-Pulse calls it as the House looks at the food stamp portion of the farm bill. It would be a lot more exciting if they could develop a workable agreement. Farm Bill, SNAP, water resources development law, funding the government ... We've got 14 days.
Info from Brownfield Ag News.
Oklahoma Farm Report's version.
Kudos to the Ag Teacher!
The ag program in Hagerstown, Indiana, will grow their own beef that will eventually end up in the school cafeteria. The Daily Reporter says the school is looking to buy and fatten about 10 head per year.
Black Market Beef
More than 22 tons of "fake beef" has been seized in China. The imposter-beef was actually pork, treated to look and taste like beef. It had been treated with chemicals and industrial salts to pull off the switch-a-roo.
Grist chides the Chipotle scarecrow cartoon ad, and even says "don’t let it brainwash you" in their latest column. But don't get too excited. The article isn't all puppies and roses.
Bored? How about cowhide sledding. No snow required.
Trouble swatting those flies? Perhaps that’s because a fly can process information seven times faster – like a fly swatter coming at it – than humans.
The pros and cons of GMOs from the Grist, if you trust their opinion.