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Beef Production Along The Mississippi

If you’ve ever been interested in how beef is produced and crops are grown along the Mississippi region of the southern U.S., the Foothills Forage Association in Alberta is organizing a 10-day all inclusive tour in late November through Mississippi and Louisiana.

This is a 10-day, nine-night escorted agricultural tour that leaves Calgary November 30 and returns the evening of December 9. Cost is $3,832 per person for double occupancy, (or you can share a room). Space is limited to a maximum of 32 people and you need to book by early June.

It looks like a great tour packed with farm visits and other agricultural highlights. And you also get a chance to visit Baton Rouge and New Orleans; experience a Cajun swamp and plantation tour, and wrap up with an authentic dinner and jazz cruise on a Mississippi river boat.

While the first day of the tour involves travel to Jackson, Mississippi, participants hit the ground running the second day with a visit to a grass feed, steer grazing operation, followed by a tour of a row crop and cattle operation.

The tour also includes stops at Mississippi State University, College of Agriculture, other farm tours near Jackson, Mississippi, Louisiana State University AgCenter and the Central Livestock Research Centre. You’ll also attend a livestock auction in Amite, Louisiana, and visit a 1,000 head Angus operation at Wiggin, Louisiana. The final tour day is a Cajun swamp and plantation tour followed by dinner and cruise on a riverboat.

The price includes airfare from and to Calgary, hotels, bus, nine breakfasts, two dinners and cruise, and tours of Jackson, Baton Route and New Orleans. The only thing that is extra is about $150 in airport taxes. And the primary requirement for taking the tour — you need a passport.

For more information on the tour or to register contact Laura Gibney with the Foothills Forage Association at 403-652-4900 or Jo Palanuik, who is co-ordinating the tour at 1-888-485-6589 or email [email protected]

FACS EXPANDS BILLBOARD CAMPAIGN

Billboards depicting the ongoing dedication of Saskatchewan producers to responsible animal care are expected to reach even more people this year.

The Farm Animal Council of Saskatchewan (FACS) expanded the “We Care” campaign by adding new billboard locations and extending the timeframe to May through November from last year’s June through September.

The 2011 campaign launched in May with images of dairy, chicken, egg and horse producers with their well-cared for animals, continues into June with billboards featuring pork, bison and beef producers.

Among producers featured on the billboards are Gerard Fehr and his siblings, Vincent Fehr and Kaylin Wiens. All three work on the family farm near Hague, where they grew up. They’ve experienced considerable positive changes in the ways of ensuring responsible animal care, as White Feather Poultry Farm grew from 20,000 laying hens to 60,000 laying hens, 45,000 chicks, plus a beef cattle herd.

A total of 35 billboards, plus one superboard, serving as the face of Saskatchewan animal agriculture will be erected at strategic locations in and around Regina, Moose Jaw, Saskatoon, North Battleford and rural locations. Details of the locations and schedules, along with images of the board, can be found on the web at: www.facs.sk.ca.

NEED A GOOD SADDLE

The Calgary Stampede is commissioning production of and selling 100 commemorative saddles to mark its 100th anniversary in 2012. The saddles, commissioned by the Stampede’s Western Performance Horse Committee are being hand crafted by master saddle maker Vic Bennett of Sherwood Park, Alberta (just east of Edmonton). They’re selling for $5,000 each.

Never to be reproduced again, these so-called “century saddles” promise meticulous craftsmanship, right down to the Calgary Stampede brand lasered on the stirrup. The limited-edition saddles will be numbered, signed by Stampede President and Chairman of the Board Mike Casey and Bennett, and accompanied by a certificate of authenticity.

They’ll be presented during a Centennial Saddle Celebration in July 2012.

To find out more about the Calgary Stampede’s Centennial saddle program, please e-mail [email protected] or visit www.calgarystampede.com/saddle2012.

About the author

Field Editor

Lee Hart

Lee Hart is editor of Cattleman’s Corner based in Calgary.

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