January 31, 2023

• Year-over-year milk production in the U.S. grew 0.8% during December. The nation’s milking herd totals 27,000 more head than a year ago and average production per cow continues to rise. With the higher production and growing stocks of dairy products, experts expect milk prices to trend lower in the coming months.

• Scientists with the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture have received a USDA grant to improve hay market efficiency through improved price discovery and transparency.

• Keep your cow costs in line by focusing on these factors.

• The Journal of Commerce reports that the “last vestiges of port congestion are clearing out.” Prices for shipping containers are also getting back to prepandemic levels.

• Kansas appears to be the final state with significant acres in extreme drought, according to the drought monitor.

January 24, 2023

• Here’s some big news. It appears that China has approved glyphosate-resistant alfalfa for import into the country.

• On a related note, China’s population is in rapid decline, which could have long-term impacts on all agricultural exports to that country.

• Cattle and calves on feed for the U.S. slaughter market (feedlots with more than 1,000 head capacity) totaled 11.7 million head on January 1. The inventory was 3% below a year ago. Marketings of fed cattle during December totaled 1.74 million head, 6% below 2021.

• The Noble Research Institute suggests to focus on your soil to improve your bottom line.

• Boost pounds and profits by frost seeding legumes now.

January 17, 2023

• Keith Johnson, longtime extension forage specialist at Purdue University, was presented the Allen Award of Illumination at last week’s American Forage and Grassland Council’s Annual Meeting in Winston-Salem, N.C. The Distinguished Grasslander Award was given to Alan Rotz, a USDA-ARS scientist at the Pasture Systems and Watershed Management Research Unit, University Park, Pa.

• A Florida soil scientist suggests using winter forage blends as insurance against climate chaos.

• Cattle don’t survive on hay; they survive on nutrients. That’s why forage testing is so important, especially during winter.

• Winter is a time to plan for beating the summer slump.

• In 2022, the Association of Equipment Manufacturers reports that sales of two-wheel drive tractors under 40 horsepower (hp) were down 19% from 2021 while 40 to 100 hp tractor sales were down 11%. Sales of two-wheel drive, 100-plus hp tractors were down 2% while four-wheel drive tractors were up 16%.

January 10, 2023

• The advantages of frost seeding red clover this spring are numerous.

• Cedar trees can destroy pasture productivity. It may be time to take action.

A new caterpillar was found this past fall on alfalfa in the Palo Verde Valley of California and several other alfalfa growing areas of western Arizona.

Prep for winter livestock needs.

• Here’s how recent subfreezing temperatures can affect warm-season perennial grasses.

January 3, 2023

• Cattle and calves on feed for the U.S. slaughter market in feedlots over 1,000 head capacity totaled 11.7 million head on December 1. The inventory was 3% below the previous year. Placements in feedlots during November totaled 1.93 million head, 2% below 2021. Marketings of fed cattle during November totaled 1.89 million head, 1% above 2021.

• Here are some thoughts on wrapping dry hay.

• There are advantages and disadvantages to different winter hay-feeding strategies.

• It’s last call for the American Forage and Grassland Council’s Annual Conference in Winston-Salem, N.C., which will be held on January 9 and 10.

• Annual forage crops bring both risks and rewards.