AgDay Daily Recap - November 28, 2011

November 28, 2011 05:23 AM

NOVEMBER 28, 2011

As the holiday's loom, Washington is working to finish its business before the end of the year. And while there have been challenges in many sectors of ag, beef producers in the southern plains have struggled to overcome one of the worst droughts on record. That's why Colin Woodall with the National Cattlemen’s Beef association recently said the group is beginning discussions on ways to help producers through a difficult time. Since mid 2011 ranchers have heavily culled cows and calves from the herd. Pasture and hay supplies are short and what is available is expensive. Add to it the potential for continued drought and it’s likely the U.S. cattle herd will shrink at a time when least export demand, is strong.

Getting herds rebuilt may be essential to keeping export markets happy. 
U.S. beef exports have grown this year, surging nearly 30% year to date. According to the latest numbers in September beef exports accounted for nearly 11% of all production. The biggest increases in shipments are to japan and South Korea. Both countries have struggled with challenges to their own herds. Japan lost production after a tsunami and resulting nuclear disaster. South Korea saw a massive outbreak of foot and mouth disease earlier this year. All told, demand for U.S. beef is strong around the world.

While La Nina is to blame for weather patterns in 2011, it remains to be seen what 2012 holds. But according to climatologists at the University of Missouri--next year may be a match to our current situation. Our own Clinton Griffiths has the story.

Erica Olson

Even in winter, America's rivers are streams add to the natural beauty of the countryside. Which is why as farmers, ranchers and landowners are on the front lines to protect those waterways. In Tennessee's Cumberland Plateau, a group of volunteers are working hard to preserve water quality. As Chuck Denney reports, the first way to protect the water is by focusing on the shoreline. Thanks chuck. Still to come this morning on AgDay, a new test may help doctors find a dangerous form of cancer years before it ever shows up on a scan. Ag for your health is next.

In Ag for your health this morning, the end of November marks the end of the Great American Smoke Out. Millions of Americans are pledging to quit smoking...which is a major cause of lung cancer. The disease is one of the deadliest forms of cancer. Part of the reason is that symptoms are often hard to spot until the disease is already advanced. But thanks to revolutionary research, that may soon change. Clark Powell has details. Thanks Clark. Doctors say they expect the blood test for lung cancer to be available to patients sometime in the near future. That's all the time we have this morning. We're glad you tuned in.

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