August 15, 2004
August, 2004 -
USDA Publishes Final ALB Rule
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) issued via the June 8, 2004, Federal Register the final rule establishing the details of assessment regulations for the Lamb Promotion, Research and Information Program.
Under the program, domestic lamb producers, feeders, seedstock producers and exporters are required to pay one-half cent ($.005) per pound of live ovine animals sold. In addition, first handlers (primarily packers) are assessed 30 cents per head of ovine animals purchased by the first handler for slaughter. First handlers and exporters are responsible for remitting assessments to the American Lamb Board.
"The final rule emphasizes the key points of the lamb program and the operations that the American Lamb Board has used since inception of the program in mid-2002 under the final assessment order published in April of that year," says American Sheep Industry Association President and Ohio sheep producer Guy Flora. "The next step is for the department to publish the proposed rule for the national referendum to be conducted in 2005."
The final rule can be accessed at http://frwebgate4.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/waisgate.cgi?WAISdocID=64792731951+5+0+0&WAISaction=retrieve
on the World Wide Web.
Sheep Center Announces 2005 Grants
The National Sheep Industry Improvement Center (NSIIC) announced via the June 10, 2004, Federal Register the availability of $300,000 in competitive grants for the sheep and goat industry.
This is the fourth year of the Sheep and Goat Grant Initiative. The projects funded will seek to address a variety of diverse issues affecting the U.S. sheep and goat industries at the local, regional, national and international level.
"I am pleased with the overwhelming response that we have had with this program the past three years, and I know the Board appreciates all of the innovative ideas from different segments of our industries," says NSIIC Vice Chair and Montana sheep producer Chase Hibbard.
The full text of the notice, forms and a summary of previously funded projects can be located at www.nsiic.org
on the World Wide Web.
All applications must be received on or before Oct. 15, 2004.
Red Meat Production Slides
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) recently reported a 9-percent decrease in U.S. red meat production for the period of May 2003 to May 2004.
Lamb and mutton production, at 13.0 million lbs., was down 14 percent from May 2003. Sheep slaughter totaled 188,500 head, 15 percent below last year, with an average live weight of 138 lbs., up one pound from May a year ago.
January to May 2004 commercial red meat production was 18.4 billion lbs., down 4 percent from 2003. Lamb and mutton production for this time-frame was down only 1 percent.