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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

February 10, 2015

Community Improvement Grants Available to 4-H & FFA Youth

Developing a thriving rural Missouri is important to FCS Financial. The Shaping Rural Missouri grant program offers Missouri 4-H and FFA organizations $500 grants to implement projects that will benefit their rural communities and youth development.

“Providing opportunities for rural community development is important to FCS Financial because our employees and customers live in these same areas,” said Scott Gardner, vice president, sales and marketing. “These grants not only strengthen our rural communities, but allow our youth to work as a team to accomplish a goal.”

Funds are awarded to assist club or chapter members in bringing positive change by establishing projects that make their local communities better places to live. FCS Financial encourages applicants to collaborate with other community organizations to develop and complete their improvement project.

Last year, FCS Financial funded 49 projects across Missouri. Projects improved local communities by building picnic tables, planting trees and landscaping school grounds.

Applications are due April 1, 2015. An application and more information on the Shaping Rural Missouri grant program can be found at under the How We’re Different tab or by calling 1-800-369-3276 ext. 1173.

American Heart Association Certifies
Extra Lean Ground Beef as Part of a Heart-healthy Diet

The Beef Checkoff Program announced Feb. 10 that extra lean ground beef (ground beef that is at least 96% lean, 4% fat) is now certified by the American Heart Association® to display its recognized and respected Heart-Check mark. Retailers now have the opportunity to help identify eight different extra lean beef items as options for part of an overall healthy diet to their shoppers using one of the most trusted nutrition icons on food packaging today.

The extra lean beef cuts that meet the American Heart Association’s requirements for heart-healthy foods as part of an overall healthy dietary pattern, and are certified to display the Heart-Check mark, include:

“Beef has many nutritional benefits and having the American Heart Association certify yet another beef cut empowers consumers to feel good about including beef in their diet, not only for its great taste but for its nutritional value,” said Jo Stanko, a cow-calf operator from Steamboat Springs, Colo., and vice chair of the Checkoff’s nutrition and health subcommittee. “Beef farmers and ranchers like myself share a common goal; to help consumers make shopping decisions to fit their needs and lifestyles by educating them about the health benefits of their food. To this end we will continue to support valid science to show consumers how extra lean beef is part of a healthy diet.”

Before putting its Heart-Check mark on any food, the American Heart Association evaluates it against nutrition requirements based on sound science regarding healthy dietary recommendations, food categories, specific product ingredients and nutrient values.

Multiple retailers with hundreds of stores across the United States currently display the Heart-Check mark on certified beef items in the meatcase. Retailers and processors can work with the Beef Checkoff Program to receive a discount on the certification fee for the American Heart Association Food Certification Program.

Resources such as on-pack labels, posters and recipes are available for retailers to use in store and in shopper communications to promote the certified beef cuts.

To learn more about participating in the American Heart Association Food Certification Program, please visit

For more information about your beef checkoff investment, visit

American Farm Bureau Federation Appeals,
Secures Stay in EPA Privacy Suit

A federal district court in Minnesota ordered EPA late Friday not to release farmers’ and ranchers’ personal information while American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) and co-plaintiff National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) appeal the court’s decision dismissing their lawsuit. By dismissing the suit, the court ruled that farmers are not harmed when the government compiles and releases a storehouse of personal information, so long as individual bits of that information are somehow publicly accessible, such as through an Internet search or on a Facebook page.

“We are pleased that farmers’ and ranchers’ personal information will be protected while we appeal the court’s decision,” AFBF President Bob Stallman said. “We disagree that the Internet age has diminished the individual’s right to protect personal information. Now, more than ever, citizens need their government to help protect their information — not gather it, tie a bow on it and send it out to anyone who asks.”

The suit concerns personal information (such as names, home addresses, telephone numbers and GPS locations) of tens of thousands of livestock and poultry farmers compiled by EPA and requested by environmental groups through Freedom of Information Act requests. AFBF and NPPC appealed the dismissal on Jan. 29.

COOL Lawsuit Dismissed; NFU Calls Canadian
Attempts To Lobby Congress ‘Last Act of Desperation’

National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson praised Feb. 9 dismissal of the U.S. District Court lawsuit on country-of-origin labeling (COOL), filed by the multinational meatpacking industry and their allies to try and stop the USDA from implementing the labeling law.

“This is a clear and indisputable win for American consumers and producers, and it’s a huge relief to know that commonsense labeling laws, like COOL, can prevail in court despite the deep pockets of the multinationals,” said Johnson.

The papers ending the long and costly lawsuit were filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, ending American Meat Institute (AMI) et al. v. USDA et al., originally filed in July 2013.

Last week a Canadian delegation composed of the Canadian Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Gerry Ritz and members of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association, the Canadian Pork Council and the Canadian Meat Council made a lobbying trip to Capital Hill on the heels of the release of a new study conducted by Auburn University Professor Robert Taylor showing that allegations that COOL depressed prices of Canadian cattle were false.

Johnson called the trip “their last act of desperation,” and pointed out that the Auburn University study not only demonstrated that that fed-cattle price basis actually declined after COOL went into effect, but also that COOL had no negative impact on imports of slaughter cattle and did not significantly affect imports of those of feeder cattle.

Johnson urged members of Congress to stand by the labeling law — supported by roughly 90% of consumers — and urged the Canadians to allow the World Trade Organization to consider the new study and the total body of information and arrive at a decision on its own.

“If the U.S. Courts are any indication of the trajectory of success of COOL, then American consumers are finally going to be permitted to know where their food comes from without intervention from our chief trade competitors and their multinational allies,” he said.

UW Extension Presents ‘Cows, Horses, Grass’
Workshop at Fort Washakie

University of Wyoming Extension is presenting “Cows, Horses, Grass … How to make the best of what you’ve got” Friday, Feb. 13, at the Frank Wise Building in Fort Washakie.

Sessions are 10 a.m.-4 p.m., and lunch is provided, said Tina Russell, extension educator. RSVPs are requested by calling the Wind River UW Extension office at 307-332-2135.

Topics include:

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


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