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May Roundup: First Theileria Case, Leadership Course Highlights, and Celebrating Beef Month

May has been a dynamic and eventful month for the Arkansas cattle industry, marked by significant developments, crucial updates, and community engagements.


Celebrating Beef Month in Arkansas

May is Beef Month in Arkansas! Thanks to Governor Sanders for recognizing the hard work of our cattle producers with an official proclamation declaring May Beef Month. We were honored to cook the Arkansas Grown and Arkansas Made burgers at the Arkansas Department of Agriculture event where the beef, egg, and strawberry industries were recognized. We’re grateful to our members who work hard every day to produce high-quality cattle and beef. And remember, Beef. It’s what’s for dinner!


First Confirmed Case of Theileria in Arkansas

The Arkansas Department of Agriculture confirmed the first case and death due to Theileria in Boone County. This disease, transmitted by the Asian Longhorn Tick, has raised concerns among cattle producers. With no treatment available, prevention through an integrated pest management procedure is essential, especially with the onset of prime tick and fly season. Producers are encouraged to use chemical controls such as back and side rubbers, ear tags, or pour-on solutions to mitigate the risk. Read more in the fact sheet from the Department of Agriculture here.


Recognizing Industry Leaders

The Arkansas Cattlemen’s Association is accepting nominations for the inaugural Arkansas Cattlemen’s Producer of the Year award. This award honors individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the cattle industry through leadership, innovation, and dedication. Nominations can be submitted through June 30 here.


USDA Electronic ID Tags Rule Update

There has been significant confusion regarding the updated USDA rule on Electronic ID tags. The revised rule primarily affects cattle over 18 months of age and sexually intact that are traveling across state lines. Notably, the Arkansas Department of Agriculture (ADA) has 500,000 tags available for producers at no cost, and they will even assist in tagging and vaccinating cattle. The ACA has been proactive in our work to limit the undue burdens these updates impose on producers.




Arkansas Cattlemen’s Leadership Course (ACLC)

Session Two of the Arkansas Cattlemen’s Leadership Course (ACLC) took place from May 21-23, featuring a series of farm tours and discussions. Participants visited several key operations, gaining valuable insights into various aspects of the cattle industry. Visits included Allen Gate & Panel, Inc. and Allen Brother Farms, Draggin' M Ranch, Sewell Cattle Company, Deer Bran Specialties, Cummins Unit of the Arkansas Department of Corrections, and Davidson Farms. The course concluded with a focus on the consumer side of the beef industry, with insights from Chef Scott Rains from Table 28 and representatives from Simon Farms discussing the farm-to-table movement and direct marketing strategies.


Board Meeting Recap

The ACA State Board Meeting convened with presentations by the University of Arkansas and a prayer. Attendance was strong, with representatives from 39 counties present.


Key approvals were swiftly made, including the minutes from the previous meeting and the financial report. Discussions ensued on the outcomes of the financial review, with positive findings highlighted alongside suggestions for procedural enhancements.


Old business was revisited, touching upon legislative updates and reflections on past events. New initiatives and plans were unveiled during the session, including preparations for the upcoming ACA Convention and Trade Show and the Cattlemen's Choice Pen Heifer Show.


The meeting also saw the presentation of policy recommendations, which were unanimously approved, reflecting a consensus-driven approach to governance. A significant discussion unfolded regarding dues, with a motion to increase active member dues to $75 ultimately passing, with an option to opt out of receiving the magazine for $50.


New Additions to the ACA Team

The ACA team welcomed two new additions this month. Noralee Townsend joined as the new Membership & Communications Director. A recent graduate from the University of Arkansas, Noralee has a double degree in Agricultural Communications and Agricultural Leadership, with minors in Event Management and Agricultural Business. Having grown up on a cattle operation in Rose Bud, Arkansas, and previously serving as the ACA intern, Noralee brings a wealth of experience and passion to the role.


Ashton Lancaster is the ACA summer intern, a rising senior at Arkansas Tech Department of Agriculture & Tourism, studying Agricultural Business - Animal Science. Growing up in Plainview, Arkansas, Ashton has deep roots in agriculture from her grandparents' cattle operation and her time in FFA at Two Rivers High School. Ashton looks forward to learning more about the association and advocating for the agriculture industry through her internship.


Celebrating 65 Years of the ACA

This month marks the 65th anniversary of the Arkansas Cattlemen’s Association. Since its inception in 1959, the ACA has dedicated itself to serving cattle producers through legislative representation, educational opportunities, advocacy, and the development of the next generation of industry leaders. The ACA invites supporters to join the 65-year campaign to continue this legacy of service and advancement. Join in support here.




Now that May has concluded and we're beginning June we're excited to continue this momentum with prep for convention and wrapping up our 2024 membership drive! Convention is shaping up to be an educational and entertaining event July 26-27 in Hot Springs. Read more about it here. If you haven't paid your dues yet, you can do so here. As always, we're grateful for our members support of the ACA!

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