Important meetings crammed in

What a busy time of the year! Never mind trying to clean house and shop for Christmas, but we seemed to have crammed in a bunch of important meetings before we shut down for the Christmas break.
The Ontario Cattlemen’s Association has been working on a proposed Business Risk Management Program for beef and pork producers, which they wanted to present to us on Wednesday in Peterborough.
I asked if they would consider doing a videoconference for us here in the north—and they are going to give it a try (for me to get to a one-day meeting in southern Ontario ends up taking three to three-and-a-half days).
I’m hoping the videoconference works well and the OCA will consider doing more of this in the future.
The only unfortunate part of participating in the meeting this way is the fact you don’t get to do the “networking” like you do when you are a part of the large group. You learn a lot outside of the meeting times and I also enjoy promoting all that we are doing here in Rainy River District.
I really would like the OCA to host its summer meeting in our district. Not only would I like to showcase our area, but I’d like them to see the distance and time it takes to travel.
I am going to keep working on that (I just have to be more like Jeannette–“don’t tell me no!”)
• • •
Dan Ferguson entertained us last week with his many adventures and stories. I then gave him a brief tour on Friday before he had to leave for the airport.
Dan was very impressed with our abattoir and really would like to have people come and visit the facility. He has been doing some work at the larger slaughter plants, so he certainly appreciated the smaller, well-maintained facility.
He also mentioned the board should be commended on building the abattoir to federal standards because if inter-provincial rules should ever change, many smaller plants would not be capable of making the switch because they were not built this way.
We then visited Phillip Krahn’s feedlot, which he and his family have been working hard to build. They have more than 800 animals on feed, and are custom feeding cattle for people from the west and east.
It is great to see young people enjoying the agriculture industry so much, and we are happy to have them here in our district farming!
• • •
Marg ran into another circumstance at the abattoir the other day, where a birth certificate for the cattle would have been appreciated and used.
She would like to remind producers that if you bring in the birth certificates, they will over-ride the dentition record. It is just another reminder that taking the time to have age verification done is worth it.
It isn’t very complicated to do–you buy the tags, take the time to record what tag goes in what calf, and when they are born. You either can enter the birthdates yourself or have someone do it for you.
You may not see the benefit until the animal enters the slaughter end of things, but it certainly opens up a lot of doors at this end.
• • •
It looks like we will be celebrating Christmas this weekend since my brother, Shane, his wife, Char, and the girls will be venturing off to Florida. I’m still bummed out that they will be gone, but we will try to make it just like Christmas this weekend.
It will be very quiet over the holidays without them, but we are going to try and communicate with Skype.
Too bad they couldn’t send us some of the warm, sunny weather through Skype, as well. It was minus-35 Celsius here on Monday morning!

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