Some 400 beef producers from across the state are being corralled today (Thursday) in West Des Moines for the annual winter conference of the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association. The group’s executive vice president, Joel Brinkmeyer, says this is a good time of year for the group to gather and discuss several vital topics. Forums are planned for issues like: animal identification, country of origin labeling, cattle prices and marketing and developing technologies. Brinkmeyer says there’ll also be some discussion of the “mad cow” scare months ago that closed U.S. borders to Canadian beef. He says it’s still “anybody’s guess” when the border will be reopened. He says U-S-D-A is taking input on a proposal through January on the partial resumption of trade in Canadian beef, allowing the import of feeder and younger cattle next spring. Brinkmeyer says he’d like to hear Iowa producers’ opinions on the subject. Also, he says many factors are going into the current price spikes in beef prices — including the Canadian beef ban, the summer drought and the rising popularity of meat-laden diets. Brinkmeyer says some the live cattle markets saw record high prices this fall. He says when the beef prices are compared to the inflating prices of new cars or homes, “The beef industry is just finally starting to catch up to the rest of the economy…Beef is still a very good value.” During the conference, Dale and Karen Green of Castalia will be honored as the 2003 Iowa Environmental Stewardship Award recipients. The conference runs through Friday at the University Park Holiday Inn in West Des Moines. For more information, surf to “www.iacattlemen.org”.
You are here: / / Beef producers meet in West Des Moines