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Copyright © 2015
Angus Journal

The Angus Journal Daily, formerly the Angus e-List, is a compilation of Angus industry news; information about hot topics in the beef industry; and updates about upcoming shows, sales and events. Click here to subscribe.

News Update

January 30, 2015

Register for Raising the Bar Conferences

The National Junior Angus Association (NJAA) hosts several leadership training sessions each year that encourage Angus youth to “raise the bar” for their state and regional junior associations. This spring, Raising the Bar conferences will be hosted at the University of Illinois and the University of Georgia.

“Raising the Bar conferences give youth a rare opportunity to tour a college town, the campus and have one-on-one time with professors to find out what their programs are all about,” says Jena Lee Wagner, former National Junior Angus Board (NJAB) member, and events intern for the American Angus Association. “It’s an experience a lot of people may not have when visiting universities.”

Made possible through financial support from the Angus Foundation, Raising the Bar is open to five state officers and two state advisors from each state in the region. The intensive leadership training encourages officers to work together to build stronger teams, as well as develop regional relationships for both youth and adults.

The tentative schedule for both conferences includes a campus tour, educational workshops, farm and ranch tours, as well as social activities and games. The University of Illinois event takes place March 19-22 in Champaign–Urbana, Ill., and participants will have the opportunity to visit Prairie View Farms, Topline Angus and Dameron Angus Farm.

The conference moves to the University of Georgia April 9-12 in Athens, Ga., and features Partisover Ranch, the CNN News headquarters, Coca-Cola and one of the world’s largest aquariums.

To participate, visit the NJAA website to download registration forms, which are due back Feb. 13 for the University of Illinois and Feb. 23 for the University of Georgia. The $100 registration fee covers lodging, conference meals and materials.

For more information on these events or to see more registration deadlines, visit

Farmland Value Expected to Take Direction
from Crop Margins and Interest Rates in 2015

While cropland values in Ohio increased in each of the past three years, several factors, including continued low interest rates, low debt-to-asset ratios and lower profit margins, are likely going to make for a relatively flat land market in 2015, an economist from the Ohio State University (OSU) College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences said.

Ohio cropland value rose 8.9% in 2014, with bare cropland averaging $5,650 an acre, said Barry Ward, production business management leader for OSU Extension.

Ward, citing statistics from the Ohio Field Office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service, said he expects values to be flat to modestly lower this year depending on relative crop margins and interest rates.

“Projected budgets for Ohio’s primary crops for 2015 show the potential for low margins and pressure to decrease cash rents,” he said. “On the other hand, strong equity positions together with higher property taxes will likely continue to lend support to cash rental rates.”

Lower profit margins in 2014 and 2015 will put downward pressure on rents, Ward said.

“These competing fundamentals suggest a relatively steady to possibly slightly lower rental market outlook for cash rental rates in 2015,” he said. “Rental rates will take their cues from crop margins. The lower the crop price and corresponding profit margin, the more downward pressure on rental rates.”

Ward spoke during the college’s 2014-2015 Agricultural Policy and Outlook series, which was a series of local meetings hosted statewide through January.

Ward said farmers can expect crop input costs to be mixed, with energy costs predicted to be lower and seed costs expected to range from modestly lower to modestly higher depending on the seed company, genetic package and the newness of the hybrid or variety.

Meanwhile, fertilizer will continue to be the most volatile crop input cost, said Ward, who is also an Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics (AEDE) assistant Extension professor.

“Most fertilizer products are at slightly higher prices compared to last year at this time,” he said. “Production issues, short gas supplies, plant turnarounds and political unrest have lent support to higher prices.”

Returns to variable costs are projected to be $128 to $296 per acre for Ohio corn this year depending on land production capabilities, Ward said. Returns to variable costs for soybeans are projected to be $145 to $302, with returns to variable costs for wheat projected at $102 to $202 per acre, he said. These figures reflect the dollars left over to pay ownership costs for machinery and equipment, land rental or ownership charges, and operator labor and management.

For more information, please view the full release here.

Application Period Opens for Lloyd Noble Scholars Program

The Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation is offering college students an opportunity to work side-by-side with the Noble Foundation’s renowned agricultural experts.

The Lloyd Noble Scholars in Agriculture program is a summer internship that provides students the opportunity to enhance their in-class education with real-world application and experiences by working alongside the Noble Foundation agricultural consultants and researchers.

“This is not your everyday internship,” said Becca McMillan, program coordinator. “Our goal is to educate and introduce these students to a broad spectrum of agricultural opportunities and provide them with the tools and resources necessary for success in the agricultural field they choose.”

To be eligible, students must:

The program typically begins in mid-May and lasts through August. The Lloyd Noble Scholars in Agriculture is a paid internship, and housing will be provided during the 10- to 12-week period. Applications are available at and must be completed by Feb. 13, 2015.

For more information about the program or application process, please contact McMillan at 580-224-6403 or

AI Training School near Athens, Georgia

The ABS Global AI Management School offers students the opportunity to learn artificial insemination (AI) techniques and herd management under skilled supervision. The curriculum includes anatomy and reproduction; reproduction and fertility; heat detection; nutrition; principles of genetics and sire selection; herd management success; proper semen placement; and insemination practice. Also, synchronization of beef cattle and planned breeding of dairy heifers will be introduced. This is a comprehensive course consisting of 24 hours of instruction: 14 hours in the classroom and 10 hours in lab working with cattle.

Three days of classroom and hands-on breeding focusing on the most up-to-date cattle artificial insemination methods. Training will be hosted at the Northeast Georgia Livestock Auction in Athens, Ga., Feb. 27-March 1, 2015, from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. each day. All classroom instruction will be the Northeast Georgia Livestock Cafeteria at 1200 Winterville Rd., Athens, GA 30605.

The registration fee is $350. This covers the cost of supplies and practice cows used at the school. This program is limited to 15 students in order to ensure as much one-to-one help during practice as possible. Therefore, registrations will be accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Contact James Umphrey at

Special note: Due to current cattle prices and limited availability of cows, all forms and fees must be submitted to Allen Southard by Feb. 6, 2015.

For more information, please view the Angus Journal Virtual Library calendar of upcoming events here.


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