China will be huge for U.S. beef. That’s the conclusion of U.S. negotiators and the U.S. cattle industry, but it’s going to take a lot of work to get there and the Chinese will have to come through on major promises over the next two months that were made in the “phase one” deal that was signed last week in the White House.
In a series of letters, Farm Service Agency officials at the state and federal levels have been debating whether or not a consistently rough winter should make producers eligible for livestock disaster assistance programs.
A nondescript press release could prove to be a starting point for transformational change in how beef cattle are tracked through the United States, or it could serve as another instance where the status quo proved too difficult to change.
With the new farm bill likely stalled until after the November mid-term elections, one of the biggest disputes still to be ironed out is a provision in the House farm bill that would end commodity program payments for acreage on which farmers haven’t been growing program crops.
In Kansas, the cattle industry and its allies in state government and academia have teamed up to launch a new offensive – the Cattle Trace project – to achieve a truly comprehensive national cattle traceability system.