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Newsmakers – for Oct. 18, 2010

Simmental breederRon Wooddisse passed away Sept. 21 at his farm in Palmerston, Ont., at the age of 60. Off the farm Ron served as president of the Canadian Simmental Association in 2000-01 and in 2003 was elected to a one-year term as president of the Ontario Cattlemen’s Association (OCA). He was also a director of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. From 2007 to 2009 he was part of the team delivering the Verified Beef Production program for the OCA and later took on some project work for the association. The family operates a purebred Simmental herd and more recently had been working on a branded beef service.

New Brunswick’s agriculture and aquaculture minister,Ronald Ouellette, was among the casualties of his party’s defeat by the Tories in last month’s provincial election. Ouellette, a former mayor of Grand Falls, lost his riding by 343 votes. The Progressive Conservatives, led by former Tory agriculture ministerDavid Alward,handily captured a majority government, winning 42 of 55 seats, leaving the Liberals with 13 and shutting out other parties including the NDP. Alward raises purebred Herefords at Riceville. Nowdeposed PremierShawn Graham defeatedBruce Hickey,president of the New Brunswick Hereford Association, to hang on to the Kent riding for the Liberals. Successful Tories in the running for the agriculture portfolio include Agriculture Critic Tantramar MLAMike Olscamp, Ryan Riordon,a 28-year-old livestock nutritionist with a master’s degree in ruminant animal nutrition, in the Nepisiguit riding, and heart surgeonDr. Jim Parrottwho operates a vineyard and winery on his farm, where he raises quarter-horses and Australian cattle dogs.

Arturo Llavallolwas elected president of the International Meat Secretariate during the 18th World Meat Congress last month in Buenos Aires. He is a member of the Rural Society of Argentina and the executive officer of the Argentine Institute of Beef Promotion.

The Alberta Cattle Feeders moved to their new office last month at 6, 11010-46th Street SE in Calgary T2C 1G4. The telephone and fax numbers remain the same.

Congratulations toBill Jameson, feedlot operator and partner of JGL Cattle in Moose Jaw, Sask., who was elected chairman of the National Cattle Feeders Association at its summer meeting in Quebec City. He replacesRick Paskalof Iron Springs, Alta., who moves to past chairman on the executive.Larry Schweitzer of Brandon, Man., is vice-chairman. The other executive member isDoug Kaufmanof Woodstock, Ont. New to the board are directorsGlen Thompson of Iron Springs, Alta., andHerb Groenenboomof Kipp, Alta.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has approved the use of the e+* Technology GmbH grading camera for estimating yield and marbling grades on Canadian cattle. Both Cargill plants and the XL Beef plant in Brooks already use the camera to confirm the official grader’s calls and sort carcasses into different marketing channels. While the camera is now approved there is nothing in the regulations that requires a plant to use the camera as an aid in grading. Only a designated grader can make binding grading decisions. For more information see our cover feature in the August 2010 issue of CANADIAN CATTLEMEN.

Merial’s new Bovine Respiratory Disease (BRD) antibiotic Zactran has been approved for use in Canada. The active ingredient, Gamithromycin, kills a broad spectrum of BRD pathogens by penetrating the cell wall and inhibiting protein synthesis. Trial data shows gamithromycin is rapidly absorbed and distributed into tissues from a single low-volume subcutaneous injection in the neck of an animal. Particularly high concentrations are achieved in the lungs just 30 minutes post injection, and persist for at least 15 days.

Available in Europe since 2008, Zactran is now licensed in Canada for the treatment and prevention of BRD associated with Mannheimia haemolytica, Pasteurella multocida, and Histophilus somni, and for the treatment of Mycoplasma bovis. More information is available online at http://ca.merial.com/cattle/zactran.asp.

The community-owned Border Line Feeders custom feedlot in Ceylon, Sask., has been nominated for two prestigious ABEX awards in the service and community involvement categories. The awards, presented by the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce to recognize outstanding achievements in business success, will be announced at the end of October. The 12,000- head feedlot that is owned by 400 shareholders has maintained a better than 96 per cent retention rate among its customers since it opened in 2005. It won the ABEX award for investment in 2006.

The Western Stock Growers’ Association (WSGA) is opposing the reinstatement of a mandatory national

$1 checkoff on cattle sales in Alberta. The province was expected to amend the refundable regulation this month after the Alberta Beef Producers and the Alberta Cattle Feeders Association signed a three-year memo of understanding last month. “Programs like the refundable checkoff have the potential to help reform and build a stronger national organization for our producers over the next three years,” saidBill Hanson,president of the WSGA in a press release. “We cannot make a reversal to part of a program that has been given no opportunity to work.”

The Philip Ranch in Kamloops, B. C. has been recognized with a Century Farm Award by the provincial Agriculture Department. Kamloops-South Thompson MLAKevin Krueger presented the award toConnie andPeter Philiplast month on behalf of Agriculture and Lands MinisterSteve Thomson.Century Farm Awards honour pioneers whose farms or ranches have been in families for 100 years or more, as well as agricultural organizations that have been active for a century or longer.

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