Livestock News for June 18

USDA selects Kansas City region for two key agencies

The Kansas City Area Development Council and its partners announced that the Kansas City region will become the new home of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Economic Research Service (ERS) and National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). The USDA team is evaluating multiple Class-A office properties in Kansas and Missouri for its 120,000-square-foot space, which will house both agencies and 568 employees, and expects to be operational this fall. The Kansas City region was selected for its existing concentration of USDA employees and operations, the more than 150 federal agencies in the area, proximity to 13 land grant universities, and central location in the agricultural heart of the country, according to a release.

Tyson Foods unveils plant-based nuggets as it moves into meat alternatives

According to CNBC, Tyson Foods said it will debut plant-based nuggets this summer as part of a new brand, Raised & Rooted, which will sell plant-based and blended meat products. Company executives have been teasing the company’s move into meat alternatives since February, but this is the first time the meatpacker is revealing its plans to compete with brands like Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat.

Congress urged to swiftly approve USMCA

According to Meat + Poultry, the North American Meat Institute was one of more than 950 stakeholders that sent a joint letter to members of Congress on June 11 urging them to quickly ratify the U.S.- Mexico-Canada Agreement to ensure an estimated $68.2 billion impact on the United States’ gross domestic product. The letter described positive impacts of the North American Free Trade Agreement, saying that this update to NAFTA will build on those impacts. Top agriculture and trade representatives also testified last week before the House of Representatives on the trade agreement.

Examine cattle for signs of foot rot after flooding

Feedstuffs reported that excessive rainfall in the Midwest means cattle producers should keep an eye out for lameness in their animals, according to an Oklahoma State University researcher. “Lameness is the first sign of foot rot, an acute and highly infectious disease,” he said. It can lead to permanent problems and shorten an animal’s life, “so examine and treat livestock promptly.”

USDA sees less red meat, more chicken

According to Meatingplace, the USDA reduced its forecasts for red meat and poultry production as a lower forecast for beef, pork and turkey production more than offset higher broiler production. The beef production forecast is reduced on lower expected steer and heifer slaughter, according to USDA’s monthly World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates report. Forecast pork production is lowered from last month primarily as the pace of slaughter to date has been slower than expected. The broiler production forecast is raised, while turkey production is lowered slightly.

Restaurant chains report shortages of Impossible Foods’ meat-free patties

According to Bloomberg, large restaurant chains Red Robin and White Castle are reporting shortages of Impossible Foods Inc.’s popular meat-free patties, even as the plant-based food producer embarks on a nationwide expansion with Burger King. Calls to a dozen Red Robins and the same number of White Castles late last week found that only two locations of each chain had Impossible Foods Inc.’s patties available. Individual locations from New York to Hillsboro, Oregon, with the burger on their menu told customers this week that they’re fresh out.