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Kato

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May 20, 2003... Announcement that a cow infected with BSE was found in Canada.

- Within an hour, the U.S. border slams shut. The rest of the world follows immediately.
- Livestock auctions stop dead. Some with animals still in the ring.
- Owners told to come and get unsold animals.
- Front page news on every newspaper and TV news show. The attack on the safety of beef is on in full force.
- Cattle producers equity drops by 90% within that same hour.
- RCalf USA launches massive publicity campaign to keep Canadian cattle out of America because any country that ever finds one case of BSE must automatically have thousands of infected animals, and ALL their beef is unsafe to use.
- Feed bans are expanded. Cattle are no longer allowed to be rendered, leaving owners to deal with deadstock. The regulators move in and impose massive programs to track and control livestock. (Lose a tag in the truck, and it will cost you $1400.00 in fines.)
- Within several months, reports of suicide begin to emerge in Canada.
- Lending institutions say they are willing to stand behind the Canadian cattlemen .. at first .. within a year that attitude is forgotten, and the liquidation of the Canadian cattle herd begins in earnest.
- One year later, the joke of the day is that leaving your children a cow herd is a form of child abuse.
- Two years later, those still standing start getting very tired of being asked "Why do you still have your cows?"
- Three years later, refinancing begins on many farms. The few safety net programs have been used up, and cattle producers are on their own. Banks won't talk to anyone with a cow herd.
- Protectionist groups in the U.S. use the bias against Canadian cattle as an incentive to implement MCOOL, which costs the Canadian cattle producers and U.S. processors millions of more dollars.
- Nine years later, the liquidation continues. The Canadian cow herd is a fraction of what it once was. Borders are still closed in some places. Shortages of feeder cattle are beginning to pressure feedlots out of business.
- A generation of young people choose not to take over the family cow operation. They will not be back.
- Damage to the Canadian cattle industry is long term, significant, and life changing for those affected.

Fast forward to April 2012. Announcement that a cow infected with BSE was found in the U.S.

- Makes the news for two days.
- Markets react with a drop in prices.
- Two borders are closed, very temporarily.
-Within days the markets are back on track and trending upward
- Damage to the American cattle industry is limited to one or two weeks of worrying.

Why the difference??? By 2012, regardless of what flounder says, the reality has been shown. The reality is that several infected animals do not make an epidemic. The reality is that SRM removal, and feed bans do stop the spread. The reality is that there are far greater dangers in this world than BSE, and that opportunists will blow things out of proportion in order to further their agendas.

We took it on the chin. We paid the price, and it was significant. We lived the nightmare for you.

You're welcome. :(
 

leanin' H

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I still think what happened to you guys was one of the biggest bunch of BS i have ever seen! :mad: Sure we compete against each other, but the US and Canada need to look out for each other better. Atleast, i think so! I am thankful we didn't have to go down the same trail ya'll did and i appreciate the hardship ya'll went through. I hope we can all work to ensure it doesn't happen again. When folks attack beef, we all gotta stand together and fight the sun's a guns.
 
A

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Leanin H- you have to look at and remember the history of how much of this came about...
Back in the 90's---many ranchers (including myself) were sold on and supported the idea of NAFTA- and the free movement of cattle back and forth..
.As many told me that will give US cattlemen access to much unused Canadian grazing land- and access to the near by feedlots that have access to lots of barley- and a WIN-WIN for both countries...GREAT

BUT immediately after passage of NAFTA the Canadian ranchers got their government to close off importing US cattle to Canada- claiming that ALL US CATTLE ARE DISEASED - even those running a barbwire fenceline from the Canadian cattle... And while Canadians could and did send truckload after truckload of cattle south (wrecking the US prices), US cattle were still severely restricted going north- even after years and years of blood testing herds by the USDA and Universities which showed they had little/no danger... (In fact many of the restriction weren't removed until long into the BSE issue when the cattle politics forced them to do anything to allow export of their beef/cattle back to the US- and miraculously they decided it wasn't that much of an issue :wink: :( .)

But during all those years when cheap Canadian cattle went south (Canadas dollar worth 60 cents on the dollar of the US dollar)- and killed our prices I watched ranch after ranch go under- and as a Court Official was involved in foreclosing on many of those- some of which were multi generation ranching/farming operations...I only wish you and some others could have been there to see the tears/heartache on some of those folks faces as they watched the cheap Canadian cattle in bullhauler after bullhauler- on their one way trade on the highways that ran next to the places they were losing-- along with string of trucks hauling swinging beef south...

The effect of dumping of cheap Canadian cattle/beef- and the impact on US ranchers (even those cattle ranging fenceline to fenceline next to the border) was proven when the border was closed due to the Canadian BSE- and the prices of cattle in the US jumped out of sight and the US cattlemen saw record high cattle prices....

NOPE- I think every move we made to prevent disease within our herds and from losing our markets was very necessary- justified- and was not out of the ordinary after the precedent the Canadian ranchers/cattlemen had put up....
I felt for them- but feel the actions were more than justified after the precedent they set against the US cattlemen in the first place....
 

Kato

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Leanin H.. I knew there had to be some good people out there.

Ot... BSE killed us. That anaplasmosis thing, which was not a closed border, BTW, just a requirment to meet standards, was an inconvenience to you. You drag that old story out every time this comes up. It may have affected a handful of Montana RCalfers who were looking to cash in on that same cheap Canadian dollar that you complain about. It sure didn't put the whole American cattle sector down the drain.

NAFTA .. don't even start on that one.

As for the cheap Canadian dollar, that was something out of our control. For every assistance we got selling cattle on that Canadian dollar, we PAID big time when we bought anything that came from the U.S. When you could buy a tractor for 75,000. We paid close to $100,000. A lot of ag inputs come from the U.S., and we were at a disadvantage that you can't imagine.

Prices going up in the U.S. was not a result of our closed border. If you choose to remember, the border was closed to live cattle. You still got Canadian beef. The poundage wasn't likely much different. What was different was that our packers had a grand old time stealing cheap cattle, and selling expensive beef, while a bunch of your packers shut their doors due to lack of cattle.

And when you got your BSE cow last month.. you got off easy.

You're welcome.
 

Kato

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I wondered when you'd show up. You're the only one who ever posts in this forum any more.

The BSE crisis and resultant stress and hardship caused by it's OVER SENSATIONALISM killed our neighbour as surely as any disease. He went out into the barn and shot himself. He's just as dead, and his life was just as important as any other person.

This is the last time I will reply to one of your posts.
 

leanin' H

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We all need to sell beef based on the merits of our production, not ripping into how others raise thiers! :) Canada produces beef as does the US and Argentina and many other countries. I guess my point is, while we will compete, we can do so as friends and neighbors. Canada isn't another state in the union. They are a proud and sorvern nation with a long history of ranching. And they are one of our closest allies and a great neighbor. I cannot fault them for looking to make a profit anymore than i could somebody in Nebraska making a profit over someone in Utah. We all still raise beef! And that makes us part of and exclusive and shrinking bunch of hardheaded folks. The way i see it, the world needs beef. I will work my tailfeathers off raising beef the way i think works the best. As will Nebraskans and Canadians! And there will be plenty of market share for all of us IF we can stick together to combat the misinformation and out right lies of the carrot chuckers! But i simply refuse to get in a peeing contest over who's beef did what in the past to somebodys else's beef! :shock: :D Grain fed VS. corn fed or Canadian VS. US, it is still rancher against rancher, which works perfectly for the tree hugger, anti-grazing, anti-meat radicals who just keep coming all out to destroy us ALL! I am not naive or dumb enough to think we can fix things overnight. But we gotta stand shoulder to shoulder from this point on and stick up for our ranches and families and traditions and our products. My beef stands on it's own merits and i am done tearing down somebody else to sell another steak. I havent always felt like i do now. And for that, i am sorry. But blaming and whining and complaining each other will be our downfall as an industry, regardless of where your mail gets delivered. :?

And Flounder, i know ya have some huge issues with BSE. But attacking ranchers on a ranching website for being ranchers isn't going to do very much more than irritate folks til they ignore ya. Call congress, call the packers, call God! But please stop preaching to the folks who aren't the problem and are offended by you insinuating that we are! :!:
 

Kato

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Total agreement here. You've renewed my faith in our ability to get along. Divide and conquer is a strategy that's been used with huge success by those above us in the food chain. And we fall for it over and over again.

The big corporations who are bent on controlling the food supply, regardless of where in the world it is, are afraid of only two things. One is that consumers will see what's going on with their food supply,and rebel. The bigger worry is that consumers and primary producers will get together. The middlemen of this world depend on us all scrapping with each other. It keeps our attention away from the real issue, and that is the fact that most of the profits in the food system do not go to the ones who produce the food.

There was lots of money made over the BSE issue, and it was not made by producers on either side of the border. It was made by the Cargill's of the world and their friends who knew how to work both sides against each other so they could be left alone to make their fortunes.

We could be powerful if we worked together. But first we need to set aside all this back stabbing, politics, and personal biases, so we can get to what really counts. That's finding a way to make a living doing what we love to do.
 

HAY MAKER

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So...........Kato, I see the ole girl still has some desire to talk Bovine politics ?
good luck
 

loomixguy

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Oldtimer said:
But during all those years when cheap Canadian cattle went south (Canadas dollar worth 60 cents on the dollar of the US dollar)- and killed our prices I watched ranch after ranch go under- and as a Court Official was involved in foreclosing on many of those- some of which were multi generation ranching/farming operations...I only wish you and some others could have been there to see the tears/heartache on some of those folks faces as they watched the cheap Canadian cattle in bullhauler after bullhauler- on their one way trade on the highways that ran next to the places they were losing-- along with string of trucks hauling swinging beef south...

Once again, Old WhiskeyBreath is painting with an awfully broad brush. I'd wager that as many places were lost due to PPM (P*ss Poor Management) than to poor prices. Some folks just have no business farming/ranching, even if they did hang on for a generation or 2. When things are great, even tards and feebs can make it work. The true test is making it when things aren't so great.
 

Kato

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Yup, burnt.. I believe it was shortly before noon, if my memory serves me correctly. I was at work at the vet clinic, and we got the call from the CFIA. This was within minutes of them getting the test results. Closed border. Game over. They already knew the border was closed by the time they notified the vets.

Called Hubby at the auction mart. He said that someone came up to the auctioneer, and told him something. The auctioneer put down the gavel. Announced "The border is closed. They found a BSE positive cow." The sale was over. The calves that were in the ring went back to the barn. The buyers packed up and left, and that was it. They spent the rest of the day calling the owners of unsold cattle to come and get them. The buyers started calling truck drivers to tell them to turn around and come back and unload what they'd bought.

We had 150 very expensive feeders in the yard. Lost over $50,000.00 in the blink of an eye. Money we couldn't afford to lose.

From the memo going out to the local CFIA offices and border crossings, it took less than 45 minutes to totally decimate the cattle industry in Canada. And it will never be the same again.
 

Sandhusker

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You were treated the same as the prior 22 countries who found BSE. Our rules were in place long before - everything was written. It was all based on the knowledge of the disease at that time.
 

burnt

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Sandhusker said:
You were treated the same as the prior 22 countries who found BSE. Our rules were in place long before - everything was written. It was all based on the knowledge of the disease at that time.

What you seem to miss completely is that your industry benefited from our excruciating experience in many ways.

I remember saying at the time that we were the shock troops and when you would discover your own BSE cases, it would be treated as nothing, and I was correct.
 
A

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Sandhusker said:
You were treated the same as the prior 22 countries who found BSE. Our rules were in place long before - everything was written. It was all based on the knowledge of the disease at that time.

And those were WRITTEN rules based on the best science available that were agreed upon not long before by Canada--BUT, BUT, BUT- after the Canada closure everything went into high gear to make exceptions/change them----especially by and mainly for the Packers that lost their access to their captive supply of cheaper Canadian cattle/beef to haul into the US and sell as US product --- which they finally got- but still screwed over the Canadian cattle producers once they got it-- while still shipping Trans-X truck after Trans-X truck south with boxed beef ....Continuing the then 10+ year screwing of the US producers by passing off imported beef product as US beef........

And then in order to get more open borders for their cattle- the Canadian government "miracuously" decided that what all the Vets, Colleges after years of testing, US cattlemen, and the USDA had been telling them- that their ALL US CATTLE ARE DISEASED rule was all Bullsh*t-- and many/most their restrictions were removed..... :???: :roll: :p

So much for "sound science"- and "best science available"-- and another proof of "multinational corporate politics"....
 

Kato

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:agree: With burnt..

And is there any appreciation for the fact? So far, with the exception of leanin' H and loomixguy, I'd say "No", which is a great disappointment.

But sadly, not a surprise, based on past performance.
 

Kato

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OT, if we hadn't taken the hit for you back then, and it was a hit administered especially gleefully by the guys at Ranchers Caring About Lawyer's Futures, you'd be sitting where we were back then.

You'd be wondering how you'd make that next loan payment. How you'd retire. How your children would go to college. Your borders would be shut just as surely as ours were back then. Your cattle would be worth 25 cents on the dollar, and you'd be screwed.

Instead, we took the fall. With a big fat push from you guys to make sure it was a hard one. It was only a matter of time before it showed up in the U.S. You knew it. Your government knew it. The world knew it. But being the bully it is, the U.S. managed to keep it on the downlow until the dust settled.

There are two sets of rules in this world when it comes to trade. One for the world, and one for the U.S., to be used whenever the rules for everyone else don't turn out so the U.S. is on top. If you don't like the rules, you change them.

I'd hate to be one of your enemies, because it's tough enough being a friend.
 

leanin' H

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Sandhusker said:
You were treated the same as the prior 22 countries who found BSE. Our rules were in place long before - everything was written. It was all based on the knowledge of the disease at that time.

No, we completely screwed our closest neighbor and long standing ally! :? There were a bunch of folks that took advantage because a few paniced. And our fellow ranchers, who happened to be Canadian, were almost put out of business. If you would of been part of it, how much you wanta bet your position would be different today? :? It is real easy to say we treated the Canadians fairly when you didn't lose your ranch in the BSE fiasco. Those guys suffered because folks down here didnt have the guts to stand up for them and some even used it as a greedy opportunity to try an finish them off altogether! :mad: You might treat your friends, your neighbors and your pardners that way, but i wouldn't. LET ME SAY IT SLOWLY........ TREAT.....OTHERS....LIKE....YOU....WANT.....TO.....BE.....TREATED! Even competitors! How many times in rodeo do you see the guy who is winning the round help the guy out who might beat him? These folks are the same as we are, just further north and stranger! :shock: :lol: But they bleed agriculture and tradition and ranching just like i do. And i'll be damned if i think we shouldn't watch each others backs as the enviromentalists and radicals and peta and ignorant, busy bodies try to run us all into oblivion! :x To lose your livelyhood because of poor prices or recession or drought or killer blizzards or a hundred other things that ranchers face is hard enough. But to lose it because of misinformation and greed is immoral, unacceptable and impossible to get over! With 95% of our population more than 3 generations removed from agriculture, we are facing an enemy who wants us all gone as soon as possible. Standing together is our best solution to fight back. And i am amazed our Canadian friends haven't mined the border, much less talk to us! :shock:
 

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