Cooperative Extension San Joaquin County
University of California
Cooperative Extension San Joaquin County

Posts Tagged: Beef Cattle

USDA decides to ditch additional rules for organic livestock producers

The following is a re-post from the trade journal Meating Place. 

USDA announced the agency has decided to withdraw the Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices (OLPP) final rule published on January 19, 2017. The withdrawal becomes effective May 13, 2018.

The rule would have increased federal regulation around animal housing, healthcare, transportation and slaughter practices of livestock and poultry for certified organic producers and handlers.

According to USDA, significant policy and legal issues were identified after the rule published in January 2017.

“After careful review and two rounds of public comment, USDA has determined that the rule exceeds the Department's statutory authority, and that the changes to the existing organic regulations could have a negative effect on voluntary participation in the National Organic Program, including real costs for producers and consumers,” an agency news release stated.

“The existing robust organic livestock and poultry regulations are effective,” said USDA Marketing and Regulatory Program Undersecretary Greg Ibach. “The organic industry's continued growth domestically and globally shows that consumers trust the current approach that balances consumer expectations and the needs of organic producers and handlers.”

Among other things, the rules would have stopped organic poultry producers from using screened-in “porches” to house birds and required them instead to provide organic poultry with outdoor access.

Organic group pursues legal options

Last week, the Organic Trade Association requested that oral arguments be heard in the lawsuit it filed last September against USDA over its failure to put into effect the (now dismissed) new organic livestock standards. Before today's decision to withdraw the rule, USDA had delayed implementation multiple times since the January 2017 final rule.

Reacting to today's news, OTA Executive Director and CEO Laura Batcha said, "This most recent egregious attempt by the Department to ignore the will of the organic industry and consumers does not halt the Organic Trade Association's seeking judicial review, but in fact furthers our resolve.The Organic Trade Association will be immediately amend the complaint to yet again challenge USDA”s latest attempt to kill a rule that has been fully vetted over a decade."

Applegate, the nation's leading natural and organic prepared meat products company, had also supported the rules.  

“Our company is harmed by competition from organic livestock products that are not meeting the highest organic welfare standards,” said Gina Asoudegan, Applegate's vice president of mission and innovation strategy. “The absence of a consistent national standard for organic livestock products and its associated additional costs harm consumers in the form of higher prices.”

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, The Humane Society of the United States and The Animal Welfare Institute had also supported the now dismissed rules.

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Posted on Monday, March 12, 2018 at 11:31 AM
Focus Area Tags: Agriculture

Ranching and California’s Drought: workshop and webcast, November 7, 2014

Ranching and California's Drought – A Workshop and Webcast

November 7, 2014

• What the U.S. Drought Monitor means to you

• How CA Ranchers are coping with the drought

• New feeding strategies for livestock in drought

• NOAA's forecast for the coming season

The map tells the tale of California's relentless drought, its location and severity. This workshop will tell you the story of the Drought Monitor, in particular how the map may help you qualify for drought relief assistance – and how local California experience and information can be used to inform the drought mapping process. Results will also be shared from current studies of how ranchers are impacted by and managing for drought on their ranches, as well as on the newest livestock drought feeding strategies. The California state climatologist will present the forecast for the coming season. The workshop will be on the UC Davis campus and webcast to the majority of participants at local satellite locations across California. The workshop recordings will be posted on-line.

Questions and comments from local satellite webcast locations will be included throughout the workshop.


9:15 AM   Registration Opens and Morning Refreshments Served
9:50 AM   Welcome, Ken Tate, UC Davis and UC Cooperative Extension
10:00 AM   U.S. Drought Monitor: Setting the Context and Introduction of Speakers, Mark Svoboda, National Drought Mitigation Center
    • A Behind the Scenes Look at the Drought Monitor: History, Tools, and Methods, Eric Luebehusen, USDA
    • How to get information into the US Drought Monitor Process, Brian Fuchs, National Drought Mitigation Center
    • The California Drought of 2011-14: Brief History and Current Impacts, Brad Rippey, USDA
11:00 AM   Questions and Discussion about the Drought Monitor and California, Chad McNutt, NOAA
Discuss the Drought Monitor and how California's ranching and range community can inform the process.
12:00 PM   Lunch Provided by the UCD Rustici Rangeland Endowments
1:00 PM   California Ranchers' Experiences with Drought, Leslie Roche, UC Davis
Insights to on-ranch drought impacts, outlooks, and management based on surveys and interviews of over 500 ranchers living through this drought.
1:30 PM   New Livestock Drought Feeding Strategies, Glenn Nader, UC Cooperative Extension
Tips for improving the nutritional quality of low quality feed products, and supplementing livestock diets on rangelands.
2:00 PM   Seasonal Climate Forecast and Opportunity for Q&A's for the Coming Season, Michael Anderson, California State Climatologist, California Department of Water Resources
2:30 PM   Closing Remarks, Tim Koopmann, President, California Cattlemen's Association


Contact for Information and Registration – Tracy Schohr at or (916)716-2643(916)716-2643

Workshop and Webcast Locations – UC Davis campus and webcast to Auburn, Ventura, San Luis Obispo, Bakersfield, Tulare, Merced, Ukiah, Redding, Susanville, Yreka – more locations and details coming soon.

Useful Links

U.S. Drought Monitor –
U.S. Drought Monitor California–
UC Rangeland Watershed Laboratory Drought Page –


Posted on Thursday, October 9, 2014 at 12:17 PM
Tags: Beef cattle (4), California (1), Drought (2), goats (12), Livestock (4), sheep (18)

UCANR Seeks Public Comment on Proposed Livestock, Forestry and Natural Resources CE Positions By July 21, 2014

The University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources created a call in January of 2014 for new UCCE Advisor and Specialist positions. The goal for filling these positions is to strengthen and rebuild the UC ANR network to meet programmatic gaps and emerging issues facing California identified in the Strategic Vision (see: ANR Strategic Vision 2025 full report or ANR Strategic Vision 2025 Executive Summary) and further refined in each of the 5 Strategic Initiatives entitled: Endemic and Invasive Pests and Diseases, Healthy Families and Communities, Sustainable Food Systems, Sustainable Natural Ecosystems and Water Quality, Quantity and Security. All 123 new proposed positions are listed on a public web page at this link.

These proposed positions are presently undergoing internal review until August 18, 2014. The public is invited to comment on these proposed positions until July 21, 2014.

Of the 123 positions proposed, 23 positions could benefit California's livestock, forestry and natural resources based industries. Those same 23 positions would have overlapping impact on both sustainable natural ecosystems, water quality, quantity security and sustainable food systems. I have listed in the table below those 23 positions with their identifying number, title, type of position (Advisor or Specialist) and where those positions would be located. Area Advisors are housed in one county but cover multiple counties. Specialists are statewide and support Advisor research and educational programs. If you click on the ID Number it will take you to the page where you can add comments for that position. There is also a link on that same page that describes the position in more detail.

ID Number

Position Title

Advisor or Specialist

Location, County or Campus


Area Livestock & Natural Resources




Area Desert Livestock




Area Forest & Natural Resources




Area Forest & Natural Resources




Area Livestock & Natural Resources




Area Livestock & Natural Resources




Area Livestock & Natural Resources & Community Development




Area Livestock & Natural Resources




Area Natural Resources – Fire & Restoration


San Diego










Livestock & Natural Resources




Applied Limnology (Lakes & Fresh Water)








Beef Cattle Herd Health


UCD Vet Med


Dairy Cattle Production Health Management


Vet Med Teaching & Research Center -Tulare


Forest Products and Woody Biomass




Livestock & Rangeland Economist




Plant Conservation




Rangeland Management




Rangeland Policy & Planning




Rangeland Ruminant Nutritional Ecology



Sierra Foothill Research & Extension Center


Sheep & Goat Heard Health & Production


UCD Vet Med


It is very possible that not all of these positions will survive the screening process. That's why it's important to have stakeholder input and I urge you to take the time to review at least each of these and comment. Please also comment on any of the other positions shown on the full list as well.

It's also important to know that the comment process is not a voting one. Rather it is a supportive process from stakeholders who are visionary and statewide-thinking about the issues facing California's livestock and natural resources owners, managers and stewards. Some of these positions, especially the Advisors and a few of the Specialists, have had very successful people filling those slots. The public comments should not focus on replacing one of these great people but local, regional and statewide need for the position to work to solve current and future problems.

As the statewide leader for the Sustainable Natural Ecosystems Initiative, I would also like to hear from my blog readers how you might rank the positions in the above table outside of the comments you provide on the public page links I've provided in the table. To do so just either comment on this blog article, message me via LinkedIn or Facebook or drop me an email at Please put SNESI positions in the subject so I can search and sort. I look forward to hearing from you!



Posted on Thursday, June 19, 2014 at 2:43 PM

Rancho in Petaluma Recalling Some Beef Products

Since many of the California producers in the North Bay use Rancho for cattle harvest this repost of an article by Rita Jane Gabbett from the Meating Place is timely. 

"Rancho Feeding Corp., based in Petaluma, Calif., is recalling about 41,683 pounds of various meat products because they were produced without the benefit of full federal inspection, USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service said.

 The following Rancho Feeding Corp. products are subject to recall: 

  • “Beef Carcasses”
  • 50-lb. boxes of “Beef Feet”
  • 20-lb. boxes of “Beef Oxtail”
  • 50-lb. boxes of “Beef Hearts” 
  • 60 and 30-lb. boxes of “Beef Liver”
  • 30-lb. boxes of “Beef Cheeks”
  • 60-lb. boxes of “Beef Tripe”
  • 30-lb. boxes of “Beef Tongue”

Beef carcasses and boxes bear the establishment number "EST. 527" inside the USDA mark of inspection. Each box bears the case code number “ON9O4.” The products were produced Jan. 8, 2014, and shipped to distribution centers and retail establishments in California.

The problem was discovered as a result of an ongoing investigation. FSIS believes the company produced product without full ante-mortem inspection as per federal regulations.

FSIS has received no reports of illness due to consumption of these products."

Posted on Tuesday, January 14, 2014 at 1:58 PM
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