|Membership Tops 3,300
Thanks to the efforts of many of our members, the fall membership drive was a great success.
A special thanks goes to the leaders of these 22 affiliates that reached their membership goal
Hancock/Harrison Pearl River
Neshoba MSU Collegiate
Quota counties are eligible to apply for the $500 Outstanding County Award sponsored by Mike Inglish and Positive Feed.
Congratulations to Tom Williams, this year's top recruiter and winner of the Brangus heifer, compliments of Martha & Jacob Megehee.
We appreciate everyone who worked to build MCA membership.
Recruiter County Total
Tom Williams Lee 47
Wayne Gentry Oktibbeha 38
Ricky Ferguson Pontotoc 24
Roger Jefcoat Jones 17
David Houston Lafayette 16
Greta Thornton Jackson 14
Danny Wilkerson Neshoba 13
Harvey Blakeney Simpson 13
Jack Rhoades Oktibbeha 12
Jacob Megehee Noxubee 11
|First South Steak Grilling Contest |
Great grillers should enter the First South Grilling Contest at the MCA convention on February 11. This year's event features more prize money and a "grilling only" category.
Click here for details and the entry form.
|Cattleman of the Year|
Applications are being taken for Cattleman of the Year in both commercial and purebred categories.
Affiliates and breed associations are encouraged to nominate their members.
|Beef's Shrinking Footprint|
A study published in this month's Journal of Animal Science found that raising a pound of beef in the United States today uses significantly fewer natural resources, including land, water, feed and fuel than in the past. "The Environmental Impact of Beef Production in the United States: 1977 compared with 2007" (Journal of Animal Science, December 18, 2011) by Jude Capper, Ph.D., Washington State University, documents that each pound of beef raised in 2007 used 33 percent less land, 12 percent less water, 19 percent less feed and 9 percent less fossil fuel energy than equivalent beef production in 1977. Waste outputs were similarly reduced, shrinking the carbon footprint of beef by 16.3 percent in 30 years.
According to Capper's research, improvements in the way cattle are raised and fed in the United States between 1977 and 2007 yielded 13 percent more total beef from 30 percent fewer animals. Raising more beef from fewer animals maximizes natural resources while providing essential nutrients for the human diet. As the population increases, it is crucial to continue the improvements demonstrated over the past 30 years to meet demand for nutrient-rich beef while reducing resource use and mitigating environmental impact. Turning back the clock on these advancements is not the solution to feeding a world population that recently reached 7 billion and will grow to 10 billion by the year 2050, concludes the author.
"As the number of mouths to feed increases and the quality of diets in many areas around the world improves, the demand for nutrient-rich protein like beef will increase," says Capper. "At the same time, resources like land, water and fossil fuels will become increasingly scarce. These realities are like two trains speeding toward each other on the same track. If we listen to alarmists shouting at us to slow down, we could face a head-on collision of epic proportions. The only way to avoid this disaster is to accelerate the pace of progress."
Capper attributes much of the reduction in beef's environmental footprint to raising cattle on grass pasture before finishing them on an optimal balanced diet of grasses, grains and other forages in a feedyard. According to previous research conducted by Capper, each pound of grain-finished beef requires 45 percent less land, 76 percent less water and 49 percent less feed and at the same time generates 51 percent less manure and 42 percent fewer carbon emissions than grass-finished beef. source: Drovers Cattle Network
|HSUS in Battle For Funds|
According to an Associated Press article, the Humane Society of the United States says it's under attack by a new group that's trying to starve it of funding by urging donors to send money to local animal shelters instead.
The society has long been a thorn in the side of some in agriculture with its undercover investigations and campaigns against animal cruelty. It claims the new group is the brainchild of conservative public relations executive Rick Berman, who spearheaded an earlier campaign against it and that it's supported by big agricultural interests.
Berman won't say who's funding the Humane Society for Shelter Pets.
The new group announced itself two weeks ago with full-page ads in USA Today, the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and New York Times. They show a sad-eyed dog and ask, "Please help shelter pets by donating locally, not to HSUS," and direct people to HumaneForPets.com, where they can find links to local shelters and more information.
February 10 & 11
On Friday, February 10th, Polly Ruhland, CEO for the Cattlemen's Beef Board, will update producers on the work of the beef checkoff program.
Tom Brink, President of J&F Okahoma Holdings, will discuss ways cattlemen can prepare the calves that feedlots find most valuable.
J&F sources 35,000 feeders per week for Five Rivers.
Brink was formerly Director of Market Research at Cattle-Fax and Executive Director, American Gelbvieh Association.
Save those Wheels!
Again this year, Merck Animal Health, maker of Ralgro, is offering to contribute $1.00 to our association's education fund for every Ralgro wheel that is turned in at the MCA convention. Bring them with you on February 10 or give them to one of our officers.
| SAVE THE DATE|
February 1 - 4