NCBA Officers to be in Oklahoma, Alabama
DENVER - Guymon, Okla., cattle feeder Paul Hitch, vice president of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, will address his fellow Oklahoma cattle producers Friday, July 28, at the Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association (OCA) Annual Convention in Oklahoma City.
The focus of Hitch’s presentation will be the recently-adopted Beef Industry Long Range Plan. The plan was assembled in a collaborative effort by all sectors of the beef industry, under the direction of a 14-member working group. The plan’s stated vision is to build a beef industry that is profitable, growing and sustainable for future generations, and to do so by solidifying U.S. beef’s position as the world’s most preferred protein.
The Long Range Plan establishes some very aggressive objectives over the five-year period of 2005-2010. These include both a 10 percent increase in domestic beef demand and a tripling of U.S beef exports from 2005 levels.
“Last year, the beef industry began the frustrating process of rebuilding the export markets lost due to BSE,” Hitch says. “We need an aggressive plan to recapture global market share, but we also haven’t lost sight of the fact that our most critical market is right here at home.”
The Long Range Plan outlines several challenges confronting the cattle industry, including growing competition from other proteins, environmental regulations, unfair trade barriers, and pressure from anti-meat and anti-livestock activists. But by delivering products that meet consumers’ needs in terms of flavor, safety, nutrition and value, cattle producers can grow U.S. demand for beef while also capitalizing on growing economies and income levels overseas.
“Growth is the only way that we expand opportunities for future generations,” Hitch said. “There are no short-cuts or quick-fixes, but this industry can achieve great things when it sets solid, unified goals.”
Hitch notes that a previous five-year plan established by the beef industry aimed for 6 percent growth in beef demand – a target thought at the time to be extremely aggressive. But not only was a long decline in beef demand reversed, demand growth of more than 20 percent was achieved between 1998 and 2005.
Citing recent volatility in the cattle and beef markets, Hitch emphasizes that one of the bedrock objectives of the Long Range Plan is profitability throughout all sectors of the beef industry.
“When all sectors have a healthy bottom line, that’s when profits are sustainable and reliable,” Hitch said. “That’s the kind of environment we all need to be working toward.”
The OCA Annual Convention - "Policy…Production…& Profitability” - runs July 27-29 at the Oklahoma City Marriott. The meeting with also feature OCA’s annual trade show, as well as a Cattlemen’s College production workshop, cattle market outlook session, and a keynote address by William Perry Pendley of the Mountain States Legal Foundation.
NCBA President-elect to Tour Alabama, Aug. 7 - 11
DENVER - National Cattlemen’s Beef Association President-elect John Queen of Waynesville, N.C., has scheduled a series of meetings across the state of Alabama to discuss current issues and gather input from Alabama cattle producers. Queen is president and owner of John Queen Farms, a third-generation cattle farm founded in 1917 and located in the western mountain region of North Carolina. His background in the beef industry includes cow/calf producer, stocker/backgrounder, feeder and grazer. He order buys, has been an auction barn owner and operator, and currently is owner of Southeast Livestock Exchange, a video-telemarketing company working in the Southeast.
“Alabama has a strong cattle industry and has long been a leader in shaping national industry policies. I’m anxious to meet with producers there to find out more about the issues of concern to them,” says Queen.
Queen will begin the Alabama meetings with a visit to Northwest Alabama Livestock Auction in Russellville on Monday, August 7, at 11:00 a.m. On Tuesday, August 8, at 11:00 a.m., Queen will visit Alabama Livestock Auction in Uniontown. The next day, Queen will travel to North Alabama to meet with producers before sale time at Sand Mountain Stockyard, and then visit the Fort Payne Stockyards in the afternoon. Thursday, August 10, Queen will be at the Cullman Stockyard before sale time and then will travel to the Arab Stockyard. Queen’s final day in Alabama will be capped off by a producer meeting and lunch at the Moulton Stockyard at 11:30 a.m., prior to sale time.
“This is a great opportunity for me to learn how NCBA can do a better job of working for producers in this state. I want them to understand that NCBA focuses on the issues brought forth from the country by cattle producers,” Queen said. “I look forward to a lot of interaction and plan to ask everyone to get engaged in our efforts at NCBA. I’m looking forward to us having a great tour in Alabama.”
Queen added that this is also an opportunity to invite cattlemen to participate in the Cattle Industry Annual Convention and Trade Show in Nashville, February 1-4, 2007.
He noted that NCBA membership has been gaining strength in Alabama and throughout the Southeast. NCBA membership has grown over 60 percent in Alabama in the past year, and has more than doubled in the eight Southeastern states that comprise NCBA Region II. Queen will be the first cattle producer from the Southeast to serve as president of the national cattlemen’s organization since Joanne Smith of Florida in 1983.
Cattlemen interested in meeting Queen or attending any of the scheduled functions should call the Alabama Cattlemen’s Association at (334) 265-1867 for more information.