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Podcast Addresses Multi-Species Grazing

Dan Macon of the University of California Cooperative Extension joins this month’s ASI Research Update podcast to discuss Multi-Species Grazing.

“Running multiple species may be the most beneficial use of resources and provides stability for your operation,” said podcast host Dr. Jake Thorne.

Getting the most from forage, supplementing the bottom line financially, animal health and predator protection can all be good reasons for livestock producers to get into multi-species grazing.

“There’s a whole host of reasons to think about multi-species grazing,” said Macon, who has grazed sheep, cattle and goats in his own operation. “I think if we look at the forage resources that we’re managing, it’s rarely strictly grass. There’s broadleaf plants, there’s shrubs, there’s other things out there in the properties we manage that probably take multi species to harvest and manage effectively. That’s certainly a big reason.”

Stocking rates are often a concern for producers looking to add a species to their existing operations, but Macon said it doesn’t have to be a major issue.

“Stocking rate depends on types of vegetation that you’re on. When I talk to multi-species producers here in California that have either added sheep to a cattle operation or cows to a sheep operation, they will tell you that you can add one ewe for every cow you run and not impact your carrying capacity. We’re underutilizing a lot of rangeland and pasture ground simply because of that difference in dietary preference,” he said.

Click Here to listen to the podcast.


Australian Market Sees Slight Gains This Season

The Australian wool market closed out the 2023-24 wool selling season softly, with an overall loss driven again by falls in the Merino fleece sector.

Fremantle returned to the program, bolstering the national offering. There were 37,147 bales on offer – 9,657 bales more than the previous week. There were 1,826,909 bales put through the auction system for the season. This was 49,725 fewer bales than the previous season – a reduction of 2.6 percent.

Buyer sentiment was best described as cautious from the outset and prices generally deteriorated as the series progressed. By the end of the week, the individual Micron Price Guides for Merino fleece dropped by between 11 and 49 cents. Worth noting, the West had a solid finish on the final day where all MPGs recorded small increases. The benchmark AWEX Eastern Market Indicator lost 18 cents for the series, closing at 1,142 Australian cents.

The EMI opened the 2023-24 selling season at 1,126 cents, gaining 16 cents across the season, which equated to a 1.4-percent increase. When viewed in USD terms, the EMI movement was similar. The EMI opened the season at 748 U.S. cents and closed the season at 763 U.S. cents for a rise of 15 U.S. cents – a 2-percent gain. The total dollar amount of wool sold for the season was $2,228 million. This was $179 million – 7.4 percent – less than the previous season due mainly to the smaller volume offered.

The 2024-25 wool selling season commences next week. Normally there would be two sales in July, then the annual three-week mid-year recess. This year there will be four sales in July, then the recess. The opening sale of the season is not as large as it has been in the past, due in part to the extra selling opportunities later in the month. There are currently 36,653 bales on offer nationally.

Click Here for the ASI Conversion Table – AWEX Prices to USD Per Pound.

Source: AWEX


Zeilinger Wool Makes Major Announcement

It was announced earlier this week that Zeilinger Wool in Michigan is “no longer operating as a fiber processor.”

“For almost 115 years, we have been privileged and grateful to serve the fiber community. The fiber industry has been a part of our family’s lives for so many generations that in fact, all of you feel like family. Our passion for this business has brought us many connections and experiences we cherish.

“With deep sincere thanks for welcoming us into your lives, Zeilinger Wool Company announces we are no longer operating as a fiber processor. To close our doors has been a difficult, heavy-hearted decision made with many alternative avenues explored. The best answer as a small business owner and for our family is to look to future endeavors and life paths while keeping the fiber community’s valued relationship.

“For our respected and loyal clients, we are glad to announce Jon Zeilinger will continue to serve the fiber industry in a new capacity as sales engineer for Crescent Woolen Mills. Crescent Woolen Mills located in Two Rivers, Wis., has an extensive generational commitment to the textile industry and is excited to welcome Jon Zeilinger with his level of skill and expertise. A commitment to processing the remainder of current Zeilinger Wool Company customer and client fiber orders will be fulfilled by Crescent Woolen Mills.

“The Zeilinger family appreciates, loves and respects the people of the North America fiber industry that provided us with lifetimes of laughter, hard work and wonderful shared memories we will treasure always. Thank you for your business.”

Source: Zeilinger Wool Company


Lamb Market Outlook Webinar Scheduled

North Dakota State University Extension and University of Minnesota Extension have partnered with the Livestock Marketing Information Center to provide a Lamb Market Outlook webinar at 7:30 p.m. CDT on July 10.

“It is important to understand the drivers of market dynamics,” said Dr. Travis Hoffman, Extension sheep specialist for NDSU and UMN. “Join us to learn about tools that can assist producers to determine plans for marketing our 2024 lamb crop.”

Dr. Tyler Cozzens is an agricultural economist at LMIC, and will be the primary presenter to discuss current supply and demand of American sheep and lamb. Cozzens is the current LMIC lead for lamb economics, and extremely talented to provide his update, thoughts and outlook for the future.

Pre-registration is required and available at: or A Zoom link will be emailed to participants upon registration. Those unable to attend the live session will receive the recording via email.

For additional information, please contact Brenda Miller at or Hoffman at

Source: NDSU Extension/UMN Extension


Last Call to Be Engraved in Idaho

Sunday is the deadline to purchase a personalized paver to forever be a part of The Good Shepherd Monument in Idaho.

The display – by the late sculptor Danny D. Edwards of Danny Edwards Bronzes – includes
11 life-sized bronze sculptures featuring eight sheep, a sheepherder, a horse and a dog, and sits on the landscape strip at Roberta McKercher Park facing Highway 75 in Hailey, Idaho. The monument is a lasting tribute to the sheep ranchers, producers, herders and the generations of families and communities who support them, and is a gift to the community, the industry and a
tribute to its 150-plus years of history in the Wood River Valley.

“You too can be a part of this monument by making a lasting tribute or memorial to commemorate a special person, entire family, pet, treasured event, business, memory of someone you cherish or through a meaningful inscription,” read a press release from the Trailing of the Sheep Festival. “Your paver will be installed by opening day of the 2024 festival and you can proudly say that you were a part of this project for all to enjoy for years to come.”

Click Here for more information.

Source: Trailing of the Sheep Festival


Online Classes Get Consumers Cooking with Lamb

The American Lamb Board is focused on educating consumers about cooking lamb at home. Many lamb purchasers cite the lack of confidence with cooking lamb as a significant barrier when cooking lamb at home. Plus, consumers who purchase lamb to cook at home are more likely to reserve lamb for special occasions and holidays.

ALB is helping to make American lamb a more mainstream at-home dinner choice through partnerships with two virtual cooking class programs. Kittch and Homemade are innovative new ways to reach and inspire consumers to cook American lamb at home for weeknight dinners.

“We know lamb purchasers are motivated to buy lamb when they have access to easy-to-follow recipes,” said ALB Chairman Jeff Ebert. “These new partnerships take that to a new level by providing both recipes and interactive online classes that let consumers prepare lamb dishes at home alongside chefs across the country.”

Kittch is a platform for a new generation of culinary enthusiasts who love to cook. The food-centric live-streaming platform offers cooking classes, kitchen tours, interviews, market visits and more. Its roster of chefs and foodie personalities offers classes and tutorials through a mix of free and paid content for viewers. The videos are accessed either live or on demand.

The next Kittch class sponsored by the American Lamb Board will take place on July 1. Chef Noah Galuten will help guests prepare Summer Lamb Bolognese, a dish that highlights summer flavors but converts them into a quick summer meat sauce using American lamb.

Homemade is America’s largest cooking school. Founded in 2020 by nationally recognized Chef Joel Gamoran, the site provides free online live cooking classes for home cooks. More than 120,000 foodie consumers subscribe to the Homemade newsletter.

The next Homemade class sponsored by the American Lamb Board will occur on July 9. Participants will cook up the Mexican classic, Birria. This rich, super-flavorful braise is a variation of barbacoa, enhanced with freshly toasted spices and whole-dried chiles. The lamb is then served in tacos with a heavenly broth for dipping.

Source: ALB


Packers & Stockyards Proposed Rule Announced

The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced this week new action to support the Biden-Harris Administration’s plan for a fairer, more competitive, and more resilient meat and poultry supply chain. USDA’s Fair and Competitive Livestock and Poultry Markets proposed rule would tackle longstanding challenges around interpretations of unfairness and competitive injury for the livestock, meat and poultry sectors. This will support farmers and growers, and continues President Biden’s work to lower food costs for consumers.

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack made the announcement during an event at the Center for American Progress showcasing the administration’s agenda to create more affordable and competitive agricultural markets. The event highlighted USDA’s wide-ranging progress to enhance the department’s ability to enforce the Packers and Stockyards Act, including previous rulemaking and an enforcement partnership with the Department of Justice. The event also provided a look back at USDA’s successful Investing in America Agenda efforts to enhance independent meat and poultry and other diversified food processing capacity; expand domestic, innovative fertilizer production; create a fairer market for seeds and other agricultural inputs; and support more robust and resilient supply chains.

“Entrenched market power and the abuses that flow from it remain an obstacle to achieving lower prices for consumers and fairer practices for producers,” said Sec. Vilsack. “Today’s proposed rule stands for clear, transparent standards so that markets function fairly and competitively for consumers and producers alike. With our whole-of-government approach to competition and resiliency, the Biden-Harris Administration is fighting every day to lower costs for American families and give farmers a fairer shake.”

The proposed rule will better protect farmers, ranchers and other covered market participants by making clearer how prohibitions on unfair practices will be enforced under the Packers and Stockyards Act. Specifically, the rule provides clearer tests and frameworks around unfair practices that harm market participants individually and unfair practices that harm markets overall. If finalized, this rule would better enable USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service to carry out its legal obligation to ensure fair and competitive national livestock, meat, and poultry markets and ensure livestock producers and poultry growers can secure the full value for their products and services.

“Farmers, ranchers, consumers and smaller processors all depend upon the Packers & Stockyards Act to protect them from bad actors in the marketplace,” said USDA’s Senior Advisor for Fair and Competitive Markets Andy Green. “It’s time to provide the regulatory clarity and simplicity needed to put an end to unfair conduct that harms the market or that harms market participants.”

The proposed rule will be published in the Federal Register for public comment. Upon publication, the public can submit comments at for 60 days. All comments submitted will be considered as USDA develops a final rule. The final rule will be published in the Federal Register.

The publication of this proposed rule is part of a suite of USDA regulatory actions under the Packers and Stockyards Act to enhance transparency, stop discrimination, and support market fairness in the livestock and poultry industries. Previous actions include the Poultry Grower Payment Systems and Capital Improvement Systems proposed rule and the Transparency in Poultry Grower Contracting and Tournaments and Inclusive Competition and Market Integrity under the Packers and Stockyards Act final rules.

Source: USDA/Agricultural Marketing Service


APHIS Offers HPAI Info for Small Ruminant Producers

Worried about how Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza might affect your flock? The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has resources available online for small ruminant producers.

“Based upon the recent report of HPAI infection in young goat kids, and historic data showing that the udder of milking goats can be infected with Influenza A virus, it is possible that goats – and potentially sheep – may be susceptible to infection with the strain of the virus that has been found in the dairy cattle. USDA plans to conduct more research to determine the susceptibility of small ruminants – particularly goats and sheep – to the H5 clade viruses, including the incubation period, viral shedding and clinical signs.”

Click Here to learn more.


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