“Growing up in Missouri, I saw firsthand the wonderful benefits that heat, humidity and high rainfall provide a fly population.”

Aside from being an irritation, face flies spread the causative agent of pinkeye, Moraxella bovis, in cattle. In “Busting pinkeye,” on page 14, Dave Sjeklocha, DVM, provides advice on how to get ahead of pinkeye and stay ahead of it.

“The theme of the BEEF seminars at the World Ag Expo in Tulare, CA, this year was ‘Profitability in a Turnaround Economy.’”

That's a challenging thing, given the uncertainty still permeating the U.S. and world economies, writes Senior Editor Burt Rutherford in “Opportunities Knock,” on page 36. But, Rutherford says that doesn't mean profitability isn't possible, and he chronicles the thoughts of three speakers who addressed that topic during the world's largest agricultural exposition in January.

“Is it a matter of: ‘Our consumer, right or wrong, may they always be right,’ or is it ‘The ethical/moral thing is to do what is right, despite public opinion.’”

Producing what the customer wants is simply good business. But, as an industry, we've always taken pride in being science-based as well, and the two increasingly seem to be moving in opposite directions, writes Contributing Editor Troy Marshall in “An industry's dilemma,” on page 56. Marshall discusses the potential downsides to an American Royal initiative that seeks to embrace consumer misconceptions of what constitutes sound production.