Peace Country Regional Meeting
Coming Soon !
Circle October 22nd, Saturday, on your calendar and plan to attend. Informative Presentations - Lunch - and a Draw for a Free Wildrose 2017 Registration for anyone who has not attended the Wildrose Convention before.
To be held at the Pomoroy Hotel (formerly the Grande Prairie Inn) 11633-100th Street, Grande Prairie AB.
A block of rooms has been booked under 'Bison Producers of Alberta' - Call 780.532.5221 to reserve your room now and receive the special rate of $129 for single Queen or double Queen, $130 for King.
THE WEEK IN REVIEW…
Seeing Demand For Unusual Meats, Ayr-Area Farm Gets Into Bison Biz
Canadians are eating more exotic meat.
Statistics show the demand for foods like rabbit, elk and venison rose by about 11 per cent between 2010 and 2015.
Jessica Gerber has noticed that increase firsthand.
At her Oakridge Acres Country Meat store outside Ayr, she’s seen more shoppers asking about everything from wild boar to emu.
But it’s bison that has seen the biggest jump in sales of all – something she credits to naturopaths recommending it to people looking to get more iron or protein in their diet. Read More HERE
Old Man On His Back Conservation Area
In the southwest corner of Saskatchewan, a small herd of plains bison has found a home in the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s Old Man on His Back Conservation Area. I recently spent a morning watching these lumbering beasts and tried to figure out why bison wallow. Watch Video HERE
Bison: At Home, On the Range
In 1994, when Mary and Lee Graese bought their first two bison, beef was what’s for dinner, as Robert Mitchum’s voice intoned on the omnipresent television ads. We’re talking a few years before those Texas cattle ranchers sued Oprah over her mad cow–related comments and nearly a decade before Ted Turner launched Ted’s Montana Grill—giving many Americans their first taste of bison, in chili, over nachos, and formed into lean burgers topped with jalapeños or blue cheese.
Yet Lee Graese humbly waves off any notion that he possessed uncannily prescient business savvy. “Initially, this was going to be a hobby,” he says of the dusky brown bull, Billy, and tawny heifer calf, Sarah, that he and his wife purchased from Minnesota’s Blue Mounds State Park as its rangers thinned the herd. “But we realized, after learning a bit more about the meat, that there was potentially a huge market for it.” Read More HERE
Stampeding For Bison
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Prior to 1600, an estimated 30 to 60 million bison roamed North America. Before the turn of the 20th century, the estimate dropped to below 1,000. But the strong and majestic animal now numbers roughly 400,000 and the bison business is booming. Ranchers, processors, chefs, environmentalists, diners and retail shoppers have all contributed to the bison’s resurgence in its native land, but consumers want more.
Bringing the bison back has proved beneficial in a number of ways. From restoring the North American ecosystems to an attempt to atone for the decimation of the past, but the American consumer might benefit the most. In today’s health-conscious food landscape, bison meat provides the taste quality of red meat with a desirable nutrition profile. Read More HERE
Are Bison More Environmentally Friendly than Cattle?
It's a recurring claim: Not only is bison meat lower in fat and healthier than beef, but farming bison is more environmentally friendly. But do the facts bear that out?
It’s believed that bison cause less trampling and erosion damage to the plains than cattle, that their diet is higher in grasses and thus less damaging to the long-term chances of the plains environment, and that bison poop functions as a natural fertilizer to their habitats.
This all mostly stems from a general idea that bison, being not domesticated and technically, even when ranched, a wild animal, are more in tune with nature, more balanced in their impact than cattle. They are also native to North America, unlike cattle, which were domesticated from Old World animals. “Because bison are a natural part of the North American ecosystem, bison ranching can be beneficial to the natural environment,” writes the National Bison Association, a promotional group, on its site. Read More HERE
Bison: The American Prairie’s First Farmers
"Mother earth never attempts to farm without live stock," said the British agriculturalist Sir Albert Howard, often considered the father of the modern organic farming movement. For millennia, bison were effectively the farmers of North America’s vast interior grasslands, maintaining a delicate ecological balance that supported a rich diversity of plant and animal species.
Most importantly, bison made sure the prairie stayed a prairie, rather than reverting to forest, which offers little to eat for such large herbivores. Grazing—along with fires (both naturally-occurring and intentionally set by native peoples)—are the two forces of nature that conspire to manage grasslands the world over.
While cattle and other domesticated livestock are often used often used to manage grasslands in other parts of the world, bison appear to be the species best-suited to controlling the North American prairie that they’ve coevolved with. In fact, a 1976 experiment in South Dakota demonstrated that bison are the prairie’s go-to: Cattle were grazed on one side of a fence and bison on the other side. Ponderosa pines soon sprouted and grew into a canopy on the side with the cattle, while the bison chomped down on the seedlings as they sprouted on their side and prevented a forest from becoming established. Read More HERE
Bison vs Buffalo: What’s the Difference?
When is a buffalo not a buffalo? When it’s an American buffalo, which isn’t a buffalo at all, but rather a bison.
You can blame early European settlers of the Great Plains for all the confusion. They too were confused, calling the vast herds of large, hoofed animals “buffalo” due to their (somewhat) similar appearance to the creatures found in Africa and Asia. They were, in fact, bison.
Both the buffalo and bison are in the Bovidae family, which also includes other cloven-hoofed ruminants, like goats. The two main species of buffalo are the African or Cape buffalo (Syncerus caffer) and the endangered wild Asian water buffalo (Bubalus arnee). There’s also a domestic water buffalo (Bubalus bubalis), that is smaller than its wild cousin. Read More HERE
Bringing Back The Bison
What happens when the once almost extinct bison is reintroduced into the over-farmed prairie ecosystem?
The Nachusa Grasslands Preserve in Franklin Grove, Illinois, is currently under the care of The Nature Conservancy, a charitable environmental organization, as they try to restore a piece of American history that was almost extinct - the grassland prairie.
Where there was once an abundance of grasslands in the United States, there is now less than 0.01 percent of the original grassland areas left standing. Dozens of plant species native to the grasslands are also at risk of extinction, along with their natural habitat. Read More HERE
Bison Video of the Day: RC Bridges and His “Pet” Bison
Why America Is Seeing A Bison Resurgence
Baby Bison are Extremely Cute. Just Look at Their Furry Faces!
When people think of the American bison, they think "noble," "powerful," triumphant," "a little scary maybe." You might not think of the bison as an especially cute animal. Handsome, yes. Cute, not really.
After conducting an exhaustive study (spending around an hour on Google Image Search looking at pictures and giggling) we here at Modern Farmer are confident in our assessment of the baby bison, known as a calf, as an extremely cute animal. In case you doubt our scientific approach to this conclusion, we also created a control group, in which we spent an hour looking at a blank white square on Google Image Search, and found that our hypothesis proved correct: We giggled with delight much more often at the images of baby bison than we did at the blank white squares. Read More HERE
- Bison is seeing a resurgence in the U.S. thanks to the health benefits the meat offers consumers as an alternative to beef and other red meat options, Meat + Poultry reported.
- Bison has fewer calories and less fat than beef, and its natural lifestyle also makes it an arguably more sustainable choice.
- The government has banned use of growth hormones in bison, and antibiotics use is strictly limited to treating sick animals at minimal doses, the National Bison Association told Meat + Poultry.
Read More HERE
Did You Know
- Tribes ask legislators to give bison more room to roam. Read More HERE
- Exotic meat demand up as chefs cater to foodies. More HERE
CBA News and Events...
The Winners Have Been Announced…
The winners of the 2015 CBA Annual Photo Contest have been chosen. Thank you to all the producers who submitted photos. You make our job hard each year trying to pick just 3 winners in each category. To see the winning photos go HERE.
Travelling? Looking for a Place to Stay?
The CBA has teamed with Choice Hotels to provide members with another benefit -- save up to 10%. Please go HERE for all the details. As well, there is a bonus offer until December 31, 2016.
1st International Symposium on Bison Health Presentations
Dr. Woodbury, one of the organizers has made it possible for us to post most of the conference presentations on the CBA Website. Go HERE
Branding No Longer Required for Shipping Bison Between Canada And The US
Effective April 8, 2015, Canadian bison exported to the USA for breeding or feeding do not have to be permanently identified with a permanent "CAN" mark as long as they are identified with a secondary dangle tag.
The dangle tag must bear the same official ID number as on the approved RFID tag. Like the RFID tags, the dangle tags can only be purchased from the Canadian Bison Association. A transitional period will take place until May 8, 2015 to accommodate health certificates that were issued prior to the effective date of this requirement.
During the transitional period, only the approved RFID tag is required for bison. Read More HERE
Read Press Release sent out by CBA and NBA HERE
Advance Payments Program improved under the Agricultural Growth Act
Effective April 1, 2016 the Manitoba Livestock Cash Advance Program has been expanded to offer advances on a select number of crops in Manitoba and Saskatchewan, which allows producers to obtain cash advances for more than one commodity. This improves service to producers. http://manitobalivestock.com/
More details can be obtained on the following links including other including other organizations that may have expanded the commodities for which they offer Cash Advances. (ENGLISH: http://bit.ly/XqeLPZ or FRENCH: http://bit.ly/1oKxhPK)
Advance Payment Program Now Available To Producers Who Market Their Products To The Retail Market
The Advance Payments Program (APP) is a federal loan guarantee program that helps livestock producers meet their financial obligations and benefit from the best market conditions by improving their cash flow throughout the production period. The Manitoba Livestock Cash Advance issues producers a cash advance on the anticipated value of their livestock that is being produced. Producers can receive a cash advance on up to 50% of the expected average market price of the livestock.
The Canadian Bison Association worked with producers and the Manitoba Livestock Cash Advance managers to make the Cash Advance Program available to producers who market their bison to the retail market from their farm. Producers who have their animals slaughtered will have 30 calendar days from the date on the slaughterhouse receipt to repay their advance. The number of bison slaughtered must be included on the slaughterhouse receipt. For additional information and application forms go to http://manitobalivestock.com/ or call 1-866-869-4008
Le Programme de paiement anticipé est maintenant offert aux producteurs qui commercialisent leurs produits sur le marché de détail
Le Programme de paiement anticipé (PPA) est un programme fédéral de garantie d’emprunt qui aide les producteurs de bétail à respecter leurs obligations financières et à bénéficier des meilleures conditions du marché en améliorant leurs liquidités tout au long de la période de production. Le programme Manitoba Livestock Cash Advance fournit une avance en espèces sur la valeur prévue du bétail qu’ils produisent. Les producteurs peuvent recevoir une avance en espèces pouvant atteindre 50 % du prix moyen prévu du marché du bétail.
L’Association canadienne du bison collabore avec les producteurs et les gestionnaires du Manitoba Livestock Cash Advance afin de mettre le PPA à la disposition des producteurs qui commercialisent leur bison sur le marché de détail à partir de leur ferme. Les producteurs dont les animaux sont abattus disposent d’un délai de 30 jours civils pour rembourser leur avance, et ce, à compter de la date indiquée sur le récépissé délivré par l’abattoir. Le nombre de bisons abattus doit figurer sur le récépissé remis par l’abattoir. Pour de plus amples renseignements et pour obtenir les formulaires de demande, visitez http://manitobalivestock.com/ ou téléphonez au 1-866-869-4008.
Through the Lens of the Producer
Over the past years the CBA has asked its members to send in pictures of their bison in the four seasons. HERE then are the Seasons of the Bison-through the lens of the Producer.
Malignant Catarrhal Fever
The SBA along with the sheep industry have created a video that will support education and awareness of Malignant Catarrhal Fever (MCF). To View the Video Go HERE
Do You Want Big Travel Insurance Savings
The CBA has partnered with ATI Insurance Inc. to provide members with another benefit -- Comprehensive Travel Insurance at a discounted price. Please go HERE and make this insurance program part of your annual travel plans. Service is offered in English and French.
Mycoplasma in Farmed Bison Survey 2014 - 2015
The Mycoplasma in Farmed Bison Survey intends to supply the bison industry with much needed knowledge, so that evidence-based decisions can be made to protect herds and control the spread of this emerging disease.
The Survey is a collaborative effort of the University of Calgary Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Alberta Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, Canadian Bison Association, veterinarians, and bison producers. It will be launched in May 2014 and is designed to provide valuable information.
For more information go HERE (scroll down to News & Events)
Weekly Price Summary
September 16, 2016
Finished Bison Prices Firm
With the Canadian dollar fluctuations, please confirm prices offered by buyers as they may change daily.
Canadian buyers continue to offer $6.00/lb. HHW for Grade “A” bison bulls with reports of higher prices for finished bulls meeting specific parameters. Prices are being driven by strong U.S. demand and exchange rates favoring the U.S. Carcasses that do not fall within buyers’ specifications are discounted. U.S. buyers are offering up to $4.50/lb. US for Grade “A” bison bulls with some prices higher. Returns to the producers are dependent on exchange rates, quality, export costs, and freight adjustments.
Grade “A” bison heifers in the desirable weight range are selling for up to $5.75/lb. HHW to Canadian buyers. U.S. buyers are offering $4.30/lb. HHW in U.S. dollars.
**Producers should research what parameters the prices are based on. Parameters such as Canadian or US delivery, weight ranges, age etc. This will assist them in comparing prices on an even basis.**
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