I really like the looks of the www.beefcowcalf.com Web site you folks at BEEF magazine have built. As an Extension agent, I have been using fact sheets from other states when searching for information. Now, you have put them all in one place and organized them in a way that is easy to find.

Here in Florida we have specialists and researchers working in the area of beef cattle, but no state can provide current information on every topic. With this Web site everyone has access to publications and specialists from all over the nation. I think this is a great idea.

Just don't forget about the differences around the country. Make sure the Southeast is represented with each management area.
Doug Mayo
Livestock Agent
Jackson County, FL

December Issue Was Tops

Rarely am I moved to write a note of commendation. I refer to the December 2002 issue of BEEF magazine. Clint Peck wrote three dandy articles. I read the magazine cover to cover and found it to be written in an objective, informative and timely manner. Thank you.
Chuck Rein
Big Timber, MT

Disagrees With Response

In the January 2002 “Reader's Viewpoint” (see p. 6), reader Connie Krause raises the issue that she could find no documentation to support the article “High On Grass” and believes BEEF should require authors to provide documented scientific references or studies from reputable sources on future articles.

I believe she needs to reread the original article. Author Doug McInnis does name two Web sites that refer to scientific support. The letter by Texas A&M University's Steve Smith that she submits in support of her position actually supports the fact that there is more Omega 3 and less Omega 6 in “range-fed” though he believes there is not enough difference to rely on this product for a total dietary source.

However, reader Ed Pendergrast's letter in that same “Reader's Viewpoint” column seems to validate real-world results via grass-fed products (“Corn-Fed Vs. Grass-Fed”).

BEEF magazine is not a technical journal. Most articles do build upon reliable references for the average producer to comprehend. Required documentation of scientific proof is often nebulous even in scientific journals and would change the scope and purpose of this publication. Keep up the good work, BEEF, of presenting opinions from all sides of an issue.
Michael Eliason
Chapel Hill Angus Farms
Richmond, IN

Another Great BEEF Issue!

I just had to congratulate you on another fine issue of BEEF magazine (January 2003). I always enjoy the whole magazine but always turn first to the “Editor's Roundup” and then to the “News Closeout.” The feature articles are always interesting and informative, too such as Clint Peck's story about Eric Davis, the incoming National Cattlemen's Beef Association president (see “2003's GateKeeper,” p. 20). Keep up the good work!
Dick LeCocq
Mora, MN

A Giant Of A Man

I read with interest your marketing story that included the Harder family of Ritzville, WA, (see “Retailer Tries Ranching,” p. 30, October). In the restless, chaotic days after World War II, I worked for the Harder ranch for a few weeks.

We gathered cattle at the various pens on the railroad that went through the ranch, sending one load of cull cows to the Armour Packing Company and others to locations on the West Coast. It was marketing on demand and, no doubt, the Harder ranch received a premium.

I will never forget John Harder, a giant of a man with one arm. Once, a calf slumped down in the calf cradle and he reached in and lifted it up. He could do anything but bridle a horse.
Gordon Boyce
Paris, TX

Class-Action Suits Needed

BEEF senior associate editor Diana Barto's article “America's Food” (p. 16, December) is well written to spread the idea that “lean meat is healthy and nutritious.” I agree.

Where she and beef producers fail to use independent, intelligent reasoning is in being critical of the class-action lawsuit filed against the fast-food restaurant. Beef producers should have advertised: “Insist on America-produced lean meat to live healthy and slim.”

We missed a great opportunity that had nationwide attention to push two items: lean beef and American beef. As a result of supporting the fast-food restaurant, we supported foreign fatty beef to once more shoot ourselves in the foot.

As for class actions, close to half of all call actions are filed by industry, most of which severely limit recoveries to many thousands of seriously injured people. A few of the better-known class-action suits are Dow Chemical's class action on Agent Orange, Dow Corning's class action on breast implants, Halliburton (Vice President Dick Cheney's last employer) and the current class action on asbestos.

Industry needs class-action lawsuits, so class action is here to stay.
Richard N. Evans
Cattleman/Attorney
Beaumont, TX