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ASI Accepting Awards Nominations

It’s time once again to submit nominations for ASI awards, which will be presented during the 2023 ASI Annual Convention on Jan. 18-21, 2023, in Fort Worth, Texas. The deadline for all award nominations is Nov. 25.

There are five awards open for nominations: The McClure Silver Ram Award, the Peter Orwick Camptender Award, the Distinguished Producer Award, the Industry Innovation Award and the Shepherd’s Voice Award.

The McClure Silver Ram Award is dedicated to volunteer commitment and service and is presented to a sheep producer who has made substantial contributions to the sheep industry and its organizations in his/her state, region or nation.

The Peter Orwick Camptender Award recognizes industry contributions from a professional in a position or field related to sheep production. Nominees should show a strong commitment and a significant contribution to the sheep industry, its organizations and its producers above and beyond what is called for in his/her professional capacity.

The Distinguished Producer Award was launched in 2014 to recognize the 150th anniversary of the national organization – the oldest livestock association in the country. This award is a way to recognize an individual who has had a significant long-term impact on the industry, including involvement with the National Wool Growers Association or American Sheep Producers Council.

The Industry Innovation Award recognizes the accomplishments of an individual or organization that improves the American sheep industry in a game-changing way, regardless of whether its impact is felt at the regional or national level.

The Shepherd’s Voice Award for Media recognizes outstanding coverage of the sheep industry by either print or broadcast outlets. The award excludes all publications and affiliates related solely to the sheep industry, allowing for recognition of outlets with general coverage of sheep industry issues.

Nominations must be submitted to ASI by Nov. 25, and past recipients of these awards are not eligible.

Click Here for more information.


Wool LDP Available to Producers

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Marketing Assistance Loan and Loan Deficiency Payment programs could provide welcome assistance for wool producers.

Currently, the program offers a 40-cent LDP (per pound grease) for ungraded wool. This has been the going rate for the past two years for ungraded wools, as graded wools have varied from week to week. This week, LDP payments are available for the following micron ranges:

  • 6 to 20.5 microns: 18 cents per pound clean;
  • 6 to 22 microns: 36 cents per pound clean;
  • 1 to 23.5 microns: 48 cents per pound clean;
  • 6 to 25.9 microns: 81 cents per pound clean;
  • 26 to 28.9 microns: 3 cents per pound clean.

Current rates are posted on the American Sheep Industry Association website each Tuesday afternoon. Producers with questions about the Wool LDP Program can contact their local Farm Service Agency office.

Click Here for more details and current rates. Looks at Navajo-Churros

In its latest blog post, takes a look at Navajo-Churro sheep and the prominent role they play in the lives of the Navajo – or Diné – people.

The blog post introduces readers to the Rainbow Fiber Co-Op, which is a Diné-led agricultural co-operative working to preserve the present and future lifeways of native pastoralists. The co-op pays Diné shepherds a fair price for their wool and helps them sustain their flocks of Navajo-Churro sheep. The organization has developed an e-commerce platform to sell Diné-grown Navajo-Churro weaving yarns direct to customers.

Click Here to read the full article and follow @ExperienceWool on Facebook and Instagram for more great stories on American wool.


Australian Wool Market Records First Increase of Season

The Australian wool market finally halted its downward run, recording an overall increase for the first time this season and the first time in just more than three months. The national offering reduced by 3,935 to 32,107 bales.

The market increase was predominantly driven by solid rises in the Merino fleece types, particularly better-style wool with favorable additional measurement results. These rises were reflected in the individual Micron Price Guides across the country, which rose by between 3 and 109 cents. The skirtings and crossbreds also recorded rises, while the oddments managed – by the smallest of margins – to record an average increase across the three indicators.

The combination of these market movements was a 36-cent rise in the AWEX Eastern Market Indicator for the week, closing at 1,271 Australian cents – up 2.9 percent. The higher prices on offer were generally accepted by most sellers, pushing the passed-in rate down to 4.8 percent – 8.5 percent lower than the previous week.

Currency continues to play a pivotal role in the market. The Australian dollar continued to trend sharply lower over the week. At the time of print, the AUD had fallen to 62.50 U.S. cents – 2.86 cents lower than the close of Week 15. The drop in the AUD was so large that when viewed in U.S. dollar terms, the EMI lost further ground. The EMI fell by 13 cents for the series, closing at 794 U.S. cents. In USD terms, the EMI is at its lowest point since October 2020 – when it was sitting at 764 US cents. The difference between the EMI in AUD to USD dollars has grown to 477. The last time the gap was this large was back in April 2020, when the difference was 504 cents.

Next week there are expected to be 37,122 bales on offer in Fremantle, Melbourne and Sydney.

Click Here for the Full Australian Wool Market Report

Source: AWEX


Legislative Update from Washington, D.C.

The American Sheep Industry Association’s lobbying firm – Cornerstone Government Affairs – offered an update this week on legislative issues in our nation’s capital.

Court Weighs State’s Rights in National Pork Producers v. Ross:

On Tuesday of this week, the U.S. Supreme Court convened to hear oral arguments on National Pork Producers Council v. Ross. The oral arguments examine whether California’s Proposition 12 – which bans the sale of pork produced in an “inhumane” way within the state of California – violates the dormant commerce clause.

The justices engaged in questioning and analyzed whether the case constituted a Pike claim – established in Pike v. Bruce Church, Inc. – which states that if the burdens of a certain regulation on interstate commerce greatly outweigh the benefits to local commerce, it is impermissible. While the petitioners argued that principles of extraterritoriality prohibited the law, the respondents’ argued California has the right to ban certain immoral products.

Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson asked the respondents why pork produced “inhumanely” needed to be banned, and not just labeled. In response, they argued that the pork would still be in California’s markets, and that grocery stores would be complicit in practices that California agreed were immoral. However, Justice Amy Coney Barrett and Justice John Roberts questioned whether one state’s morality could infringe on another state’s, bringing the argument back to a Pike analysis. Ultimately, the justices seemed to be interested in whether a less restrictive means standard – embedded in the Pike precedent – could be implemented in California to achieve the same moral interests without unreasonably affecting interstate commerce.

The Supreme Court has until June 2023 to issue a decision on the case.

Rail Union Vetoes WH-Negotiated Deal:

The Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees Division of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters – the third largest rail workers’ union in the country – rejected a labor contract proposed between rail carriers and workers’ union representatives on Monday of this week.

The Brotherhood is now the first union to say no to the deal brokered by the Biden Administration. Issues with unpaid leave and on-call policies were of most importance to rail workers. The deal would have resulted in a 24 percent wage increase for employees over five years.

Now, the BMWED plans to re-enter negotiations with rail carriers, which will reset the countdown on a new union strike. Four other railroad unions have approved the tentative agreements with the railroads, but every one of the 12 unions representing freight rail employees must ratify their contracts to prevent a strike. Other unions plan to complete voting on the deal by mid-November.

Source: Cornerstone Government Affairs


North Dakota to Host Shearing, Classing Schools

Those with an interest in wool might want to make plans to head North in November, as the North Dakota Hettinger Research Extension Center will host both wool classing and shearing schools on Nov. 19-21.

The wool classing school will take place at the Hettinger Armory. Topics covered at the school will include: wool fiber growth, development and production; objective measurement of wool; genetic selection programs; hands-on wool grading; wool contamination and handling practices; and wool classing, packaging, labeling and marking. The registration deadline is Oct. 28 and the school is limited to 10 students. Larry Prager of Center of the Nation Wool will join Heather Pearce of the American Sheep Industry Association as instructors at the school.

Shearers Mike Hagens, Wade Kopren and Alex Moser will handle instruction at the shearing school and will cover: the professional shearing pattern; tagging and eyeing; equipment maintenance and repair; and wool handling and preparation. The school is open to both experienced and beginning students. The registration deadline for the shearing school is Nov. 4 and the school is limited to 16 students.

The cost to attend either school is $150, and students should sign up as soon as possible as the schools can fill up well in advance of the deadline.

For more information, contact Dr. Christopher Schauer at or 701-567-4323.

Source: NDSU


DSANA Plans Dairy Ewe Nutrition Webinars

The Dairy Sheep Association of North America will conduct a five-webinar series on nutrition for the dairy ewe led by Barbie Casey of Small Ruminant Consulting. The webinar series begins on Wednesday at 1 p.m. eastern time and is free to all DSANA members. Non-members may register for the series for $25.

The first webinar will provide an overview of the four primary nutrient groups – complex carbohydrates, protein, fat and minerals – and how these nutrient groups are used by both the dairy ewe and by her rumen microbiome. The second and third webinars are scheduled for Dec. 7 and Jan. 11, respectively. The final two webinars will be in March and May.

Click Here for more information and to register.

Source: DSANA


Taziki’s Doubles Down with American Lamb

Taziki’s Mediterranean Café and the American Lamb Board teamed up to promote a new Mediterranean Lamb Burger – made with two patties of 100 percent American Lamb. The promotion ran from June through September.

“The Lamb Burger was an overwhelming success this summer. Our guests loved the Mediterranean flair added to comfort food and sales surpassed our expectations. The double-patty Mediterranean Lamb Burger will definitely make another appearance on our menu,” said Taziki’s CEO Dan Simpson.

Headquartered in Birmingham, Ala., Taziki’s Mediterranean Café has 90 locations spanning across 16 states nationally, with most locations in the Southeast.

Because of its popularity, about 50 percent of the Taziki’s locations continued to offer the lamb burger for an additional month beyond the promotion period. A similar promotion was featured in 2021 with great results, which led to a repeat feature in 2022.

“We thank Taziki’s for their commitment to using American lamb in their lamb burgers. Serving local lamb supports the nation’s shepherds and their families,” said ALB Chairman Peter Camino.

Source: ALB


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