0731JerryNinesr.cfm Industry needs individual cattle feeders
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Industry needs individual cattle feeders

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By Jerry Nine

(July 31)—There is a lot I don’t know about the cattle industry. But one thing I do feel very strong about is the fact that we have to keep the individual cattleman and cattle feeder in there to ensure that we keep a competitive cattle market. For now it is competitive with the big corporations battling each other along with a few independents for feeder cattle. But with these huge losses in the feedlot—most independents are trying to decide what to do. Do we risk even more money to try to survive or do we downsize, which most already have? Or can we change our game plans and simply do what these big corporations do not want to do, which is basically start calves and sell to these big majors. One thing that would help is if grain got a lot cheaper. The basis for corn in this area is $2.60 a bushel for now. This will change if we get a big corn crop in the Corn Belt. The way we market our fat cattle has almost become a joke and the joke is on the individual cattle feeder. We provide them with way too many cattle that they do not have to compete for daily. If you want our industry to go exactly like the hog and chicken industry, then do as you are doing now. If not, speak up and be willing for change and the risk of change. I have talked to several feedlots that would like to change the way we sell fat cattle. I want to compile a list for someone way more intelligent than I am to try to get the ball rolling. If not—sit there and do nothing. I promise you if we lose the individual cattle feeder, it will change our whole industry more than any other change ever has. Please drop me a note this next month and simply say you are for change and the name of your feedlot.

Several years ago a friend of mine was helping a kid with his show steer at the stock show. This calf was a very good calf but reminded me of an old girlfriend. Attitude. Someone told this kid to go buy some beer for this calf and it would calm him down. As they were trying to get the beer down this calf another man walked by and said as wild as that calf is, you better save one or two for the kid.

Editor’s note: Jerry Nine, Woodward, Okla., is a lifetime cattleman who grew up on his family’s ranch near Laverne, Okla.

Date: 8/05/2013



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