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Stirring the Dust Up in Montana with Labeling Laws

by Kayla Sargent

“Consumers want to know where their meat comes from,” Montana Cattlemen’s Association President Jim Baker, a fourth generation Plains, Montana rancher said.  “Right now, the labels are confusing and misleading.  It could come from Canada and then be processed in the USA and be labeled a ‘product of USA’.  Blended meat like hamburger can come from about anywhere

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Trump Nominates Former Oil and Gas Lobbyist for Secretary of Interior

by Kayla Sargent

On February 4, President Trump announced plans to nominate David Bernhardt to Secretary of Interior following Ryan Zinke’s resignation in December.  Bernhardt, a Colorado native, was confirmed as Zinke’s deputy in July 2017 and has been acting Interior chief since the beginning of the year.

In a tweet announcing his choice, President Trump said “David has done a fantastic

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Public Comment Guides BLM Analysis of American Prairie Reserve Proposal

by Kayla Sargent

A wild American buffalo (Bison), taken at the National Bison Range in Montana.

American Prairie Reserve (APR) has private property linked to 18 Bureau of Land Management (BLM) grazing allotments in five Montana counties.  With the intent to “create the largest nature reserve in the continental United States,” APR proposed several changes to the BLM allotment stipulations.

On the

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Skijoring, Where Montana Cultures Come Together

Mark LaRowe Photography.

By Lily Platts

There have always been cowboys who like to ski and skiers who like to ride horses. Now the increase in popularity of combining these two sports in skijoring is helping Montana towns stay busy in the winter and it is exposing people to both western and skiing culture. Rodeo participants, ranchers, ski racers, avid weekend

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Women’s Suffer-Age

If I was a woman, I’d be a radical feminist and darn tired of sick jokes like, “My wife ran off with my best friend and I miss him.” Or, “women have smaller feet so they can stand closer to the sink,” or a sign on the door of a hardware store, “Gone to wife’s funeral. Back in half an

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Sam Kane Beef Processors Future Still Uncertain

After filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Tuesday, January 22, Sam Kane Beef Processors,Corpus Christi, Texas eventually had to offer the plant at auction on Wednesday, February 6.

At the time Kane Beef filed bankruptcy, eight potential buyers had already submitted bids.  But just one week after filing, the highest bidder was unable to secure financing.  Kane Beef sought permission to then

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SDSU Conducts In-Depth Study of Pollinators

When it comes to producing oilseed, the more honeybees and other pollinators that visit a flowering field of Brassica carinata, the better.

This is only one of the insights South Dakota State University researchers gained about the mutually beneficial relationship between honeybees and native pollinators, such as bumblebees, butterflies, moths, wasps and flies, and Brassica carinata, a member of the mustard

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Colorado Rancher Stands Up For Beliefs

By Kerry Hoffschneider 

Thea, Shad, Beatty Lane and Lynsey Sullivan.

Shad Sullivan’s grandparents, Paul and Ruth Sullivan, went through the Depression.  His dad, Jerry, went through the drought of the 1950’s.  Times like those can make or break any cattle operation.  But, in the case of the Sullivans, they have continued to push through.  Today, Sullivan is owner of S&M Cattle

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Easy to Swallow But Hard to Pass

Several Decembers back, Woody began vomiting and abdominal x-rays suggested a bowel obstruction.  In surgery, we discovered Woody’s insatiable taste for German polka music had prompted him to munch a gift-wrapped cassette tape from under the Christmas tree.  Several segments of Woody’s small bowel were badly damaged, and he had a couple tough days but fully recovered.

Over my career I

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SAV America 8018 – World Record Setting Bull

A personal account by WAR Field Editor Will Bollum

Watching Auctioneer Joe Goggins call out numbers in the millions of dollars was a once in a lifetime experience. This past weekend, Schaff Angus Valley set a new world record, selling SAV America 8018 for $1.51 Million to Herbster Angus Farms of Falls City, Nebraska. There had been chatter amongst sale attendees

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Miles City Cowboy Poetry Gathering 2019

The 5th Annual Miles City Cowboy Poetry Gathering will be hosted by the Range Riders Museum on Sunday, February 24.  Entertainment will kick off at 11:30 a.m. with local talent Angie Dauben and Bob Petermann from Wibaux.  They will be performing western and gospel music.  A roast beef dinner will be served at noon.  The featured performers Margaret Wilhelm, Jarle

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Agri-Kid

Two-year-old Parker Anderson had some trouble with his rope but was able to eventually catch both horns during the Kids’ Dummy Roping contest at Black Hills Stock Show. His parents are Matt and Kayla Anderson of Rapid City, South Dakota.

Melissa Burke photo.

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Cyril H. Carpenter, Past NFU President December 12, 1922 — February 4, 2019

Cyril H. Carpenter, age 96 of Bloomington, Minnesota, died February 4, 2019. He was born on December 12, 1922 in rural Sauk Centre, Minnesota. He grew up on the family farm, one of ten children and graduated from Sauk Centre High School.

Cy began his 23-year official affiliation with Farmers Union in 1965 as a lobbyist and secretary for Minnesota Farmers

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Too Little, Too Late Late January Snowfall Not Enough in Some Montana River Basins

Periods of high-pressure during January resulted in sunny skies and above average temperatures in Montana, causing snowpack percentages to decline in many river basins, according to snow survey data collected by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). This pattern broke down late in the month, and significant snowfall occurred across most of the state of Montana.

This much needed system

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Montana Ranchers Should Claim Their Water Rights Before June 30, 2019

In a letter sent February 5, Shad Sullivan, Chair of the R-CALF USA Private Property Rights Committee, told Montana ranchers that right now may be their last opportunity to establish an enforceable claim for their water rights.

Sullivan is referring to the bill passed in the Montana Legislature, HB 110, that reopened the window for landowners and allotment owners to obtain

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Zebra Mussels and Fake Meat We’re Not Fans of Either

By Chelcie Cargill, Nicole Rolf, and Liv Stavick

Montana Farm Bureau Federation

All good things must come to an end.  We had a good run boasting about the slower pace of the legislative session.  Apparently, all it takes to speed things up is a nasty cold snap and suddenly we all decide it’s a much better idea to stay indoors and discuss

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Here’s the Ugly Truth About Fake Meat

By Alan Newport

BeefProducer.com – January 2019

 

FAKE MEAT.  It’s not fake meat at all, nor any of the other names attached to it.  These miraculous “lab-grown meat products” that will someday conquer the meats market and save all the abused livestock actually are grown from the blood of cattle fetuses.

That’s right.  Look it up.  The base cell-culturing media for all fake

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Thoughts from the Editor

If you have not heard of the Green New Deal by now, I commend you for not turning on the tv, picking up your phone, or reading a paper for the past week.  This bill sure got a lot of buzz after it’s release last Thursday.  But as far as I can tell, that’s about all it is right now

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Montana DOL Reminds Cattle Producers of New Brucellosis Vaccination Rules

The Montana Department of Livestock (MDOL) is reminding producers that all sexually intact female cattle and domestic bison 12 months of age and older in Beaverhead, Big Horn, Broadwater, Carbon, Gallatin, Jefferson, Madison, Park, Stillwater, and Sweet Grass Counties must be vaccinated against brucellosis. This includes cattle that enter these counties seasonally.

In October of 2018, MDOL adopted changes to Administrative

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The State of the Nation’s Farm and Food Union

The President of the United States should not be the only federal official required to offer the nation’s citizens an annual report on the “State of the Union.”

Every senior department executive – from Cabinet secretaries and the Pentagon chiefs, to the Senate’s majority leader and the House speaker – should be required to examine their integral part of the world’s

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Historical Photos

Art Schultz, facing the elements to fix some fence on his ranch near Volland, Kansas in the early 1940s.  Photo courtesy of Keith Schultz, Volland, Kansas.

Greg Hoots, also of Kansas, shares wonderful historical photos each week on “Photo Friday” and this one caught my attention, so I thought I would share it with all of you as well!

Hoots wrote with

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Environmental Sustainability in the 2018 Farm Bill

By Matt Perdue, NFU Government Relations Director

Environmental sustainability is critical for the future of family farming and ranching and for the health of our rural communities. As concerns over water quality, soil health, and the wide-ranging effects of climate-change mount, incentives-based conservation programs are more important now than ever.  The 2018 Farm Bill maintains and improves the tools that family

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The Handshake

Carole Jarvis of Wickenburg, Arizona shared this great poem with us.

“Well, look who just walked in the door!

Fer gosh sakes, how long has it been?

Come over here and ‘pump my paw’!

Ain’t see ya’ since way back when!”

 

A handshake, the greeting of choice,

Along with ‘howdy’ and smile,

Is part of western tradition,

And has been for a long, long while.

 

To shake on it

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The True Plan of the Possum

“Thump,” went Rascal’s pudgy body as he plopped to the straw covered floor. He looked both ways before he skittered along his path the tack room.  Carrying his trusty knapsack, Rascal was ready to fill it full of his favorite tasty treats.

“Ready or not, here I come my sweet, powdery goodness,” he mumbled.

He pushed open the tack room door and

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THE UNIVERSITY OF MONTANA WESTERN COLT CHALLENGE AND SALE

The University of Montana Western’s Equine Studies Department has scheduled its Third Annual Colt Challenge and Sale for March 29-30, 2019. The event will be held at La Cense Montana, located at 4600 Carrigan Lane in Dillon, Montana.

The Colt Challenge, held on March 29 starting at 9:00 a.m., will showcase Montana Western students from the Sales Preparation Class riding their assigned colts.

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The Perks of the “Green New Deal”

While other columnists are piling on ridiculing the “Green New Deal” (GND) proposed by Democratic New York Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts, I have to say I like some of the key components of their plan!

Today I especially like the part about phasing out cows within the next ten years.  The truck thermometer read 10 below

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Comments

It is has not taken long for a couple of the newly elected Democratic members of Congress to start bashing the way we do business in the livestock industry.  Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) released what they called the “Green New Deal” on February 7.  These are two of the farthest “left” members of Congress in

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People, Passion, and Perseverance Montana’s Pinnow Takes National Leadership Role

By Hannah Johlman

Since Craig and Wanda Pinnow worked to pay off their ranch in 30 years, she is passionate about educating and encouraging young people who want to become involved in agriculture on the many options available.

Growing up, Wanda Pinnow’s family grew everything they ate on their Baker, Montana ranch from their garden to their beef, lambs, and milk

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Building the Pease Bottom Ditch

Times was plenty tough in 1904 when the Pease Bottom ditch was built. (Note: The Pease Bottom is located on the north side of the Yellowstone River, west of Hysham and about 60 miles east of Billings, Montana.)

The people of Pease Bottom had raised money among themselves to make a ditch. Andy Sullivan, a dirt contractor, George Streets, and myself

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Mixed Reactions from Ag Groups on State of Union

by Kayla Sargent

All ears were on the State of the Union address last Tuesday night where President Trump called for renewed bipartisanship to “break decades of political stalemate”.  Amid the chatter, ag organizations were quick to reveal their opinions of the talk.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said Trump “provided a unifying, hopeful vision” and highlighted the Administration’s accomplishments and

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Poet’s Corner

Lumpy

By Mike Smith, Shawmut, MT

 

An oddity from the bovine race

Sort of funny looking with a black and white face,

She had a soft ball lump, square on her nose

Some old bruise from the past, I suppose.

 

She’s always raised a strappin’ big calf

And that lump was always god for a laugh.

Lumpy has always had a nice big bag,

To assure a nice calf, I

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Bits & Pieces

WOTUS Hearing Scheduled 
A public hearing on the Trump Administration’s proposed rewrite of the Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rule has been rescheduled for February 27 – 28, in Kansas City, Kansas. The hearing is designed to provide interested parties the opportunity to present data, views, and information concerning the proposed rule.

The original public hearing for the EPA and Army Corps of

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The Last Cowboys A Pioneer Family in the New West

If you are a rodeo fan, you’ve undoubtedly heard of the saddle bronc riding Wright family from Milford, Utah.  Cody Wright, oldest of thirteen children borne to Bill and Evelyn Wright, is the sixth generation to work the family ranch. He is also the first of his siblings to claim the World Champion Saddle Bronc title.  His six brothers following

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Bits & Pieces

UW Extension Publication Helps Prepare for Droughts

The drought preparedness publication from the University of Wyoming Extension can be a starting point for agricultural producers to make critical decisions for their operations, said an extension educator involved in its production.

“Navigating Drought in Wyoming can help landowners be more prepared when the next drought happens,” Brian Sebade, based in Albany County and

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