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R-CALF in D.C.

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Anonymous

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February 22, 2006



Dozens of Cattle Producers Participate

in Historic Washington Stampede



(Billings, Mont.) – Scores of independent U.S. cattle producers from 22 states traveled to the nation’s capitol last week to participate in R-CALF USA’s Washington Stampede, a two-day outreach effort on Capitol Hill in which members advanced several issues important to both the domestic cattle industry and Rural America. Members discussed those topics with numerous Administration officials, more than 100 legislators, staff and others.



Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns met with several R-CALF USA members, staff and leaders, as did several other U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) officials whose duties impact domestic cattle operations – namely USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), the agency’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), as well as USDA’s Animal ID and Beef Checkoff Coordinators. R-CALF USA representatives also spent time with the administrator of USDA's Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA), the chief agriculture negotiator at the U.S. Trade Representative’s (USTR’s) office, and highly placed officials in the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).

One item Stampede participants impressed upon Congress and the Administration is the need to quickly implement Mandatory Country-of-Origin Labeling (M-COOL) for beef and other commodities.

“USDA has come a long way in making seafood labeling workable for the wholesalers and retailers,” said R-CALF USA COOL Committee Chair Danni Beer, a South Dakota rancher. “Now, we need the same cooperation from USDA for the largest segment of agriculture – the cattle industry – to differentiate our product here in the United States.

“COOL is a simple, low-cost law that even the Government Accountability Office (GAO) noted would cost ranchers very little if implemented correctly,” she commented.

International trade was another priority topic members addressed during the Washington Stampede, and R-CALF USA pointed out that the U.S. needs to rethink its trade policies so U.S. ranchers can start to benefit from free trade agreements (FTAs).

“Historically, the U.S. has been a global leader in agricultural trade, but we went from a $20 billion trade surplus a few years ago to a trade deficit of nearly $4.5 billion today – and $3.5 billion of that drop is from cattle and beef,” outlined R-CALF USA Region VII Director and Iowa Membership Chair Eric Nelson. “”We need to catch up to the global changes and rethink our trade policy to make U.S. cattle producers the winners.”

Competition, captive supply and other market concerns were also hot topics, according to R-CALF USA Marketing Committee Chair Randy Stevenson, of Wheatland, Wyo.

“Much was discussed on competition in light of USDA’s recent Inspector General report that criticized the agency’s handling of Packers and Stockyards Act obligations,” said Stevenson. “Also on the table was the amicus brief filed recently by R-CALF and 35 other cattle-producer organizations in support of the plaintiffs in the Pickett vs. Tyson case. We also talked about the recent collapse of the cattle market during high-demand times, and the continuing concentration of the U.S. packing industry.”

R-CALF USA President and Region V Director Chuck Kiker, of Beaumont, Texas, spoke with several folks on the Hill about reopening the United States’ Asian and Japanese beef export markets.



“Our greatest concern is being realized at this very moment, and that is policy by some groups that says you have to ‘give access to gain access’ – something the rest of the world is not following, and it’s turning the U.S. into a dumping ground for products other countries have banned,” he said. “Either we start getting trade policies harmonized, or U.S. cattle producers are headed for some tough times with the trade liberalizations being pursued in trade agreements today.”



The subject of government and other industry groups adopting obstructionist policies also came up for discussion several times, according to R-CALF USA International Trade Committee Chair Doug Zalesky, of Hesperus, Colo.



“We stressed that these kinds of actions by both the government and other industry groups prohibit the U.S. beef industry from meeting requests by our Japanese customers, and it’s costing the U.S. cattle industry billions of dollars,” said Zalesky. “The customer is king, and at the time Japan requested their imported beef to be tested for BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopathy), Japan itself was testing all of their cattle for the disease.



“I think even here in the U.S. we expect imported product to come in under the same production standards we operate under, so the Japanese had a reasonable request,” he said.



North Dakota veterinarian Richard Bowman chairs R-CALF USA’s Animal ID Committee, and noted that USDA’s proposed National Animal Identification System (NAIS) continues to be at the top of everyone’s mind.



“The NAIS needs to be flexible and should be done in cooperation with state animal-health departments around the country, which would ensure cooperation for Animal ID without the government having to mandate a program,” Bowman emphasized.



“It’s great that so many R-CALF members could take the time to come to D.C. and sit down with our elected officials to explain our concerns and things we can do to create more opportunities within the U.S. cattle industry,” said R-CALF USA Mississippi Membership Chair Joel Gill.



# # #



R-CALF USA (Ranchers-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund, United Stockgrowers of America) represents thousands of U.S. cattle producers on domestic and international trade and marketing issues. R-CALF USA, a national, non-profit organization, is dedicated to ensuring the continued profitability and viability of the U.S. cattle industry. R-CALF USA’s membership consists primarily of cow/calf operators, cattle backgrounders, and feedlot owners. Its members – over 18,000 strong – are located in 47 states, and the organization has over 60 local and state association affiliates, from both cattle and farm organizations. Various main street businesses are associate members of R-CALF USA. For more information, visit www.r-calfusa.com or, call 406-252-2516.
 

Bill

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It's a good thing you get these R-Calf press releases Oldtimer as the press doesn't seem to want to cover their events.

This is the trip to Washington people will remember.

R-CALF Adds Another To Its Pile Of Blunders
Troy Marshall

May 28, 2004 12:03 PM
E-mail this article

While the industry reaction to R-CALF's earlier attacks on the safety of U.S. beef were widely condemned, most critics considered them unfortunate lapses in judgment that some organizations make in the heat of the battle. R-CALF made it clear this week, however, that the organization believes that the end does justify any means.

The group held a press conference on Thursday, hand in hand with radical anti-beef activist groups, to denounce USDA's handling of the BSE situation. The press event in Washington, D.C., questioned the safety of beef, and called for government hearings on the matter.

The decision to align with such radical anti-beef groups seems all the more surprising considering that many within R-CALF hope to make the organization mainstream and represent producers on a wide spectrum of issues. Instead, this latest R-CALF blunder seems to push them more in the direction of radical activism than mainstream representation.

As could be expected, the National Cattlemen's Beef Association and other groups issued blistering press releases questioning R-CALF's decision and motives. It's shocking, following the disastrous statements regarding beef safety just a few weeks ago, that rather than issue an apology, the organization confirms to all that it is willing to destroy beef demand in order to further its isolationist, protectionist, anti-trade policies.

R-CALF has some legitimate concerns and issues, and a significant number of good cattlemen who support its positions. But, it's time for R-CALF to make radical changes in its leadership structure so such inexcusable mistakes aren't repeated. R-CALF's members have far too much invested to have the organization lose all credibility or be subverted by these radical stands.

For a moment, consider the caliber of groups R-CALF publicly aligned itself with this week:

The Consumer Federation of America (CFA) is famous for opposing irradiation, and pushing for the reduction of beef in the school lunch program among other things. CFA's leader, Carol Tucker Foreman, is famous for her anti-beef rhetoric and efforts to stir up the hysteria about the safety of our product.

The Consumer Union (CU), along with CFA, have been two of the leading groups pushing since Dec. 23, 2003, the message that beef is unsafe. You've probably read the multitude of inaccurate statements by CU "leader" Michael Hansen in the popular press. Hansen and the CU have also led the crusade against biotechnology and GMOs.

The following is a quote from former U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop in regard to Hansen's rhetoric: "Unfortunately, a few fringe groups are using misleading statements and blatant falsehoods as part of a long-running campaign to scare consumers about a perfectly safe food ... it is necessary to condemn these attacks ... for what they are: baseless, manipulative and completely irresponsible."

Then there's Public Citizen (PC), which gains its supposed credibility through founder Ralph Nader. But PC is best known for its membership in the Global Safe Food Alliance, formed by such animal rights organizations as Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, the Western Organization of Resource Councils, Farm Sanctuary, etc., to put out anti-meat messages. If you want more information on PC, just go to its Web site at www.citizen.org/, check out the "Meatrix" at www.themeatrix.com/ or the report "Jungle 2000" at http://www.whistleblower.org/uploads/The%20Jungle%202000%20-.PDF
 

ocm

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Bill said:
It's a good thing you get these R-Calf press releases Oldtimer as the press doesn't seem to want to cover their events.

This is the trip to Washington people will remember.

R-CALF Adds Another To Its Pile Of Blunders
Troy Marshall

May 28, 2004 12:03 PM
E-mail this article

While the industry reaction to R-CALF's earlier attacks on the safety of U.S. beef were widely condemned, most critics considered them unfortunate lapses in judgment that some organizations make in the heat of the battle. R-CALF made it clear this week, however, that the organization believes that the end does justify any means.

The group held a press conference on Thursday, hand in hand with radical anti-beef activist groups, to denounce USDA's handling of the BSE situation. The press event in Washington, D.C., questioned the safety of beef, and called for government hearings on the matter.

The decision to align with such radical anti-beef groups seems all the more surprising considering that many within R-CALF hope to make the organization mainstream and represent producers on a wide spectrum of issues. Instead, this latest R-CALF blunder seems to push them more in the direction of radical activism than mainstream representation.

As could be expected, the National Cattlemen's Beef Association and other groups issued blistering press releases questioning R-CALF's decision and motives. It's shocking, following the disastrous statements regarding beef safety just a few weeks ago, that rather than issue an apology, the organization confirms to all that it is willing to destroy beef demand in order to further its isolationist, protectionist, anti-trade policies.

R-CALF has some legitimate concerns and issues, and a significant number of good cattlemen who support its positions. But, it's time for R-CALF to make radical changes in its leadership structure so such inexcusable mistakes aren't repeated. R-CALF's members have far too much invested to have the organization lose all credibility or be subverted by these radical stands.

For a moment, consider the caliber of groups R-CALF publicly aligned itself with this week:

The Consumer Federation of America (CFA) is famous for opposing irradiation, and pushing for the reduction of beef in the school lunch program among other things. CFA's leader, Carol Tucker Foreman, is famous for her anti-beef rhetoric and efforts to stir up the hysteria about the safety of our product.

The Consumer Union (CU), along with CFA, have been two of the leading groups pushing since Dec. 23, 2003, the message that beef is unsafe. You've probably read the multitude of inaccurate statements by CU "leader" Michael Hansen in the popular press. Hansen and the CU have also led the crusade against biotechnology and GMOs.

The following is a quote from former U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop in regard to Hansen's rhetoric: "Unfortunately, a few fringe groups are using misleading statements and blatant falsehoods as part of a long-running campaign to scare consumers about a perfectly safe food ... it is necessary to condemn these attacks ... for what they are: baseless, manipulative and completely irresponsible."

Then there's Public Citizen (PC), which gains its supposed credibility through founder Ralph Nader. But PC is best known for its membership in the Global Safe Food Alliance, formed by such animal rights organizations as Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, the Western Organization of Resource Councils, Farm Sanctuary, etc., to put out anti-meat messages. If you want more information on PC, just go to its Web site at www.citizen.org/, check out the "Meatrix" at www.themeatrix.com/ or the report "Jungle 2000" at http://www.whistleblower.org/uploads/The%20Jungle%202000%20-.PDF

NOT

Oldtimer beat me to the post. I just posted the same release, but read my comment I made afterwards on the thread headed. What R-CALF does instead of paying 20 professional lobbyists.

This meeting is ancient history. (Not to mention misrepresented)
 

Bill

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ocm said:
Bill said:
It's a good thing you get these R-Calf press releases Oldtimer as the press doesn't seem to want to cover their events.

This is the trip to Washington people will remember.

R-CALF Adds Another To Its Pile Of Blunders
Troy Marshall

May 28, 2004 12:03 PM
E-mail this article

While the industry reaction to R-CALF's earlier attacks on the safety of U.S. beef were widely condemned, most critics considered them unfortunate lapses in judgment that some organizations make in the heat of the battle. R-CALF made it clear this week, however, that the organization believes that the end does justify any means.

The group held a press conference on Thursday, hand in hand with radical anti-beef activist groups, to denounce USDA's handling of the BSE situation. The press event in Washington, D.C., questioned the safety of beef, and called for government hearings on the matter.

The decision to align with such radical anti-beef groups seems all the more surprising considering that many within R-CALF hope to make the organization mainstream and represent producers on a wide spectrum of issues. Instead, this latest R-CALF blunder seems to push them more in the direction of radical activism than mainstream representation.

As could be expected, the National Cattlemen's Beef Association and other groups issued blistering press releases questioning R-CALF's decision and motives. It's shocking, following the disastrous statements regarding beef safety just a few weeks ago, that rather than issue an apology, the organization confirms to all that it is willing to destroy beef demand in order to further its isolationist, protectionist, anti-trade policies.

R-CALF has some legitimate concerns and issues, and a significant number of good cattlemen who support its positions. But, it's time for R-CALF to make radical changes in its leadership structure so such inexcusable mistakes aren't repeated. R-CALF's members have far too much invested to have the organization lose all credibility or be subverted by these radical stands.

For a moment, consider the caliber of groups R-CALF publicly aligned itself with this week:

The Consumer Federation of America (CFA) is famous for opposing irradiation, and pushing for the reduction of beef in the school lunch program among other things. CFA's leader, Carol Tucker Foreman, is famous for her anti-beef rhetoric and efforts to stir up the hysteria about the safety of our product.

The Consumer Union (CU), along with CFA, have been two of the leading groups pushing since Dec. 23, 2003, the message that beef is unsafe. You've probably read the multitude of inaccurate statements by CU "leader" Michael Hansen in the popular press. Hansen and the CU have also led the crusade against biotechnology and GMOs.

The following is a quote from former U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop in regard to Hansen's rhetoric: "Unfortunately, a few fringe groups are using misleading statements and blatant falsehoods as part of a long-running campaign to scare consumers about a perfectly safe food ... it is necessary to condemn these attacks ... for what they are: baseless, manipulative and completely irresponsible."

Then there's Public Citizen (PC), which gains its supposed credibility through founder Ralph Nader. But PC is best known for its membership in the Global Safe Food Alliance, formed by such animal rights organizations as Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, the Western Organization of Resource Councils, Farm Sanctuary, etc., to put out anti-meat messages. If you want more information on PC, just go to its Web site at www.citizen.org/, check out the "Meatrix" at www.themeatrix.com/ or the report "Jungle 2000" at http://www.whistleblower.org/uploads/The%20Jungle%202000%20-.PDF

NOT

Oldtimer beat me to the post. I just posted the same release, but read my comment I made afterwards on the thread headed. What R-CALF does instead of paying 20 professional lobbyists.

This meeting is ancient history. (Not to mention misrepresented)
I think most would consider Troy Marshall every bit and probably more credible as any R-Calf press release. :roll:
 

ocm

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Bill said:
ocm said:
Bill said:
It's a good thing you get these R-Calf press releases Oldtimer as the press doesn't seem to want to cover their events.

This is the trip to Washington people will remember.

NOT

Oldtimer beat me to the post. I just posted the same release, but read my comment I made afterwards on the thread headed. What R-CALF does instead of paying 20 professional lobbyists.

This meeting is ancient history. (Not to mention misrepresented)
I think most would consider Troy Marshall every bit and probably more credible as any R-Calf press release. :roll:

I know Troy Marshall personally. You are mistaken. He has a clear bias.
 

Bill

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ocm said:
Bill said:
ocm said:
NOT

Oldtimer beat me to the post. I just posted the same release, but read my comment I made afterwards on the thread headed. What R-CALF does instead of paying 20 professional lobbyists.

This meeting is ancient history. (Not to mention misrepresented)
I think most would consider Troy Marshall every bit and probably more credible as any R-Calf press release. :roll:

I know Troy Marshall personally. You are mistaken. He has a clear bias.
There is a difference between credibility and bias. Where are all the media reports of this HISTORIC R-Calf Stampede on Washington? On file with reports of the "highly successful" Janurary R-Calf convention for use at a later date? :roll: :lol: :lol:

I'll put Troy ahead of anything coming out of a R-Calf press release.
 

ocm

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Bill said:
There is a difference between credibility and bias. Where are all the media reports of this HISTORIC R-Calf Stampede on Washington? On file with reports of the "highly successful" Janurary R-Calf convention for use at a later date? :roll: :lol: :lol:

I'll put Troy ahead of anything coming out of a R-Calf press release.

R-CALF didn't do this for publicity. It wasn't "witnessed" by the press. Sometimes publicity help accomplish things, sometimes it doesn't. R-CALF accomplished some things of real substance on this trip, most of which will not make the news.

One of the big things was that many in DC realized that the typical NCBA characterization of R-CALF was totally false as they actually got to talk with R-CALF members and found out that they were really mainstream people from their constituency.
 

Bill

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ocm said:
Bill said:
There is a difference between credibility and bias. Where are all the media reports of this HISTORIC R-Calf Stampede on Washington? On file with reports of the "highly successful" Janurary R-Calf convention for use at a later date? :roll: :lol: :lol:

I'll put Troy ahead of anything coming out of a R-Calf press release.

R-CALF didn't do this for publicity. It wasn't "witnessed" by the press. Sometimes publicity help accomplish things, sometimes it doesn't. R-CALF accomplished some things of real substance on this trip, most of which will not make the news.

One of the big things was that many in DC realized that the typical NCBA characterization of R-CALF was totally false as they actually got to talk with R-CALF members and found out that they were really mainstream people from their constituency.
:roll: :roll: :lol: :lol: :lol:


Sure :roll: What ever you say!
 

mrj

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ocm said:
Bill said:
There is a difference between credibility and bias. Where are all the media reports of this HISTORIC R-Calf Stampede on Washington? On file with reports of the "highly successful" Janurary R-Calf convention for use at a later date? :roll: :lol: :lol:

I'll put Troy ahead of anything coming out of a R-Calf press release.

R-CALF didn't do this for publicity. It wasn't "witnessed" by the press. Sometimes publicity help accomplish things, sometimes it doesn't. R-CALF accomplished some things of real substance on this trip, most of which will not make the news.

One of the big things was that many in DC realized that the typical NCBA characterization of R-CALF was totally false as they actually got to talk with R-CALF members and found out that they were really mainstream people from their constituency.

Would you post for us even ONE example of an official statement by NCBA indicating ANYTHING about R-CALF that was "totally false"?

MRJ
 

mrj

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ocm said:
~SH~ said:
OCM: "R-CALF accomplished some things of real substance on this trip,....."

Like what?


~SH~

They're secrets. You don't have clearance.


Naughty! Naughty! Econ will chastize you for participating in some of those nasty Congressional/political "secret", "closed door", "behind the scenes" DEALS he hates so much.

ONTOH, he likely will not admit it ispossible someone on "his" side could do such a thing.

MRJ
 

Bill

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~SH~ said:
OCM: "R-CALF accomplished some things of real substance on this trip,....."

Like what?


~SH~

C'mon SH!! You know, they did...things of real substance.....and stuff...like...well...really important stuff. Things that will better the beef industry. Ooops R-Calf isn't part of the beef industry are they? :roll:

But at least they didn't do this "HISTORIC STAMPEDE" for publicity! :lol:

R-Calf would never do anything just for publicity! :wink:
 

Econ101

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MRJ said:
ocm said:
~SH~ said:
Like what?


~SH~

They're secrets. You don't have clearance.


Naughty! Naughty! Econ will chastize you for participating in some of those nasty Congressional/political "secret", "closed door", "behind the scenes" DEALS he hates so much.

ONTOH, he likely will not admit it ispossible someone on "his" side could do such a thing.

MRJ

MRJ, there is a real difference in telling legislators what is going on and telling you anything. We already know you wield the NCBA "stamp of approval" that the packers have loaned them. Like I said before, there is a time and a place for everything. Congressmen who sell out their ethics for campaign contributions should see their actions brought out to the light. Public citizen has opened the door a little.
 

Tam

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Bill said:
~SH~ said:
OCM: "R-CALF accomplished some things of real substance on this trip,....."

Like what?


~SH~

C'mon SH!! You know, they did...things of real substance.....and stuff...like...well...really important stuff. Things that will better the beef industry. Ooops R-Calf isn't part of the beef industry are they? :roll:

But at least they didn't do this "HISTORIC STAMPEDE" for publicity! :lol:

R-Calf would never do anything just for publicity! :wink:

Bill did you forget where Leo admitted they held their press conference with "Consumer Groups" :wink: because they recieve more MEDIA ATTENTION. I guess R-CALF should have taken a few consumer groups with them so the media would have covered their Historical Stampede. :lol: :lol:
 

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Tam, "Bill did you forget where Leo admitted they held their press conference with "Consumer Groups" because they recieve more MEDIA ATTENTION. I guess R-CALF should have taken a few consumer groups with them so the media would have covered their Historical Stampede."

Isn't the reason you hold a press conference in the first place is to get media attention? :shock:

Since consumers are the ones who actually buy the products from our cattle, why wouldn't you ally with them? Would it be wiser to alienate the people you depend on to make a living? :shock:

It's obvious R-CALF didn't want a great deal of media coverage for their stampede. The goal was to bend ears in Washington, not create fanfare for a couple of hyper biased Canadians to attempt to lampoon with half-witted comments. :lol:

I wonder how many people you just recruited for R-CALF with that post.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Sandbag: "Since consumers are the ones who actually buy the products from our cattle, why wouldn't you ally with them? Would it be wiser to alienate the people you depend on to make a living?"

I thought some of you blamers had stated that you were in the "cattle industry", not the "beef industry". If that's the case, why are you concerned about the sale of beef?

You blamers aren't aligning yourselves with "CONSUMERS" per say, you are aligning yourselves with CERTAIN CONSUMER GROUPS WHO ARE CRITICAL OF USDA. One of those consumer groups you are aligning yourself with wanted to remove beef from the school lunch menu.

All you're doing is repeating Leo's political spin to justify aligning yourself with radical ANTI BEEF groups one of which wanted to remove beef from the school lunch menu.

Deception at it's finest.

Some R-CULTers even claim that the sale of beef only benefits the packers and retailers anyway, they are in the "CATTLE INDUSTRY".

Real depth there!


~SH~
 

Econ101

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~SH~ said:
Sandbag: "Since consumers are the ones who actually buy the products from our cattle, why wouldn't you ally with them? Would it be wiser to alienate the people you depend on to make a living?"

I thought some of you blamers had stated that you were in the "cattle industry", not the "beef industry". If that's the case, why are you concerned about the sale of beef?

You blamers aren't aligning yourselves with "CONSUMERS" per say, you are aligning yourselves with CERTAIN CONSUMER GROUPS WHO ARE CRITICAL OF USDA. One of those consumer groups you are aligning yourself with wanted to remove beef from the school lunch menu.

All you're doing is repeating Leo's political spin to justify aligning yourself with radical ANTI BEEF groups one of which wanted to remove beef from the school lunch menu.

Deception at it's finest.

Some R-CULTers even claim that the sale of beef only benefits the packers and retailers anyway, they are in the "CATTLE INDUSTRY".

Real depth there!


~SH~

The USDA has been the worse enemy to small packers and the cattlemen. All the while cattlemen pay into the checkoff so they can advertise for the packers. What a joke.
 

mrj

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ocm, you forgot to tell us what you have seen stated by NCBA about R-CALF that was totally false.

Econ, do you believe that EVERY Congressman who accepts ANY campaign has "sold out his ethics"? Or is it just Republicans who qualify for your comment?

Sandhusker, it is one thing to "get media attention" to inform or attempt to promote benefits of beef in their diets. It is entirely a different deal from the cattle producers standpoint to use that "media attention" to tell them that eating beef from " a country with BSE" (meaning Canada) very well can come back to haunt us when the USA found our native BSE case. That was a collossal blunder for the illigitmate purpose of attacking Canadian beef and it could have had even worse consequences for US beef if NCBA did not have the facts about BSE and it's known consequences available to those consumers prior to that ill fated news release.

Again, Econ. Beef Checkoff advertising is for CONSUMERS, not packers, you jester, you! That beef was raised by cattle producers, believe it or not! WE benefit when MORE beef is sold, and WE suffer if LESS beef is sold to CONSUMERS.

MRJ
 

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MRJ, eating beef from a BSE positive country without proper precautions can come back and haunt us.
 

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