A Washington cattle producers organization will talk about animal traceability, property rights and its new slaughter facility at its annual meeting this weekend.
The Cattle Producers of Washington annual meeting begins at 10 a.m. Oct. 19 at the Pillar Rock Grill, 1373 Road F.2 NE in Moses Lake.
Todd Kelsey, vice president of the organization, said the annual meeting strengthens the organization, which primarily represents the needs of beef cow-calf producers.
Speakers include Washington State Department of Agriculture Director Bud Hover. Kelsey said Hover will talk about animal disease traceability issues.
Kelsey said CPOW is against an exemption that allows dairymen to trade up to 15 head of cattle without records. He expects Hover to eliminate the exemption.
“If we’re going to have an air-tight animal disease traceability program, it’s got to be air tight,” he said. “There can’t be any exemption.”
Kelsey expects Meacham to cover property rights issues and provide an update on the Joe Lemire ruling in the Washington State Supreme Court last August.
The organization will give away its annual trail rider award during dinner and address the organization’s new livestock processors cooperative association processing plant, which opened in August.
Kelsey expects high fuel costs and interest in local foods to push the food supply to become more regionally based. He expects the new facility to play a significant part in those changes, noting that as cattle numbers in Washington have declined in the last 25 years, populations have increased.
“They’re not all vegetarians,” Kelsey said. “They’re eating beef, they’re just eating beef from somewhere else.”
Kelsey believes sees a movement to run food producers out of the country.
“When you rely on another country to feed you, that’s ultimate power,” he said. “I want to keep our country feeding our country, not having to rely on imported beef or imported wheat or grain or other things.”
Cost to attend is $40 for the all-day meeting, $35 for dinner only and $70 for the meeting and dinner.