Another year has come and gone, and with it, a lot has changed in the world for beef producers in the United States. We have seen the passing of Proposition 2, elected a new president, established Country-of-Origin-Labeling, listened to Oprah's and animal rights activists' continued attacks on agriculture, watched as more young people leave the ranch for better jobs in the cities, paid for the highest fuel, feed and fertilizer prices in history, attended farm auctions of neighbors going out of business, passed a bailout plan and listened to economists explain the downward spiral of the nation's economy.
It's no wonder that cattlemen aren't exactly optimistic about the state of the industry. 2008 has certainly been an extremely challenging year. However, despite the many obstacles of 2008, cattlemen can look forward to a fresh start in 2009. For those that have weathered the storm of the past year, the rewards will be huge dividends in the years to come.
So, I wish you the best of luck in 2009. I truly believe the economy will turn around, and things will greatly improve for cattlemen. Tomorrow, I'm going to take the day off to celebrate the past year and set new goals for 2009. I hope you are able to take part in some festivities, as well. Get ready to join me in the New Year for news updates and blogs at BEEF Daily!
Happy New Year! 2009, here we come!