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Posted 05/26/2020

Member Alert

North Dakota Stockmen’s Association Member Update: May 26, 2020


The North Dakota Stockmen’s Association (NDSA) is continuing to work on issues related to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and other topics.


Following is an update:


Coronavirus Food Assistance Program signup begins today

Signup for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) opened today. Farm Service Agency staff at local U.S. Department of Agriculture Service Centers will work with producers to file applications. Producers are advised to call ahead to get an appointment and further instructions.


For details about what you should do to prepare for signup, click here. A short video that explains how to apply can be found here.


More work ahead

The NDSA appreciates the CFAP program as a first step in delivering much-needed relief to cattle ranchers, it recognizes there is much work yet to do to address the needs of the state’s cow-calf producers, stockers and feeders and is already working with the Congressional delegation on some supplementary support for those not adequately addressed under the existing program.


Change of plans: virtual packing plant tour available tonight

There is a change of plans in tonight’s “Intersection of the Cattle and Beef Industries” webinar co-hosted by North Dakota State University Extension, Texas A&M Agrilife Extension and West Virginia University due to a speaker emergency. Instead of the beef checkoff discussion, which was supposed to be the topic, tonight’s webinar will feature a virtual packing plant tour. The webinar begins at 7 p.m. CT. Registration is required to participate in the webinars. You can register here.


Department of Justice responds

Today, the U.S. Department of Justice sent a letter to the NDSA. It is in response to the NDSA’s call last month for an investigation into beef pricing margins. Makan Delrahim, assistant attorney general, wrote, “As a matter of long-standing policy, the Department does not confirm or deny the existence of investigations relating to law enforcement matters. As a result, the Department cannot specifically comment on the matters raised in your letter. We can assure you, however, that we take very seriously any potential violations of the antitrust laws by the beef meatpacking industry. The Department criminally prosecutes conspiracies to fix prices. Rooting out collusion affecting household staples, especially food products, is a top priority for the Antitrust Division … To the extent that price fixing, bid rigging and market allocation relate to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Department is committed to safeguarding the free market and protecting American consumers during this crucial time.” To read the full letter, click here.


North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame honor

The NDSA is humbled to have been selected as a 2020 North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame inductee in the Special Achievement category. Induction will take place at a special 25th anniversary celebration in Medora on Friday, June 19, and Saturday, June 20. Event and ticket information can be found here. Please come celebrate this special honor with the organization.


Crisis leadership: What your family needs from you

Don Tyler, owner of Tyler & Associates, has been an executive and management coach for ag clients for more than 25 years. “When business leaders manage a crisis, their laser-focus on all the challenges, decisions and disruptive events that occur should not obscure another group that needs and deserves their attention as well – their own family,” he said. “Quite often, they are so focused on taking care of their staff and those families that they can accidentally overlook the needs of their personal family.” He shares some suggestions about crisis leadership from seasoned business leaders in a column in Feedlot magazine here.


Mental health resources

The coronavirus situation and a culmination of other factors have made this a stressful time for many farm and ranch families across North Dakota. Know that you are not alone. If you need someone to talk to, call a friend or a neighbor, our office or 211, a statewide 24-hour crisis intervention, health and human services information and referral line.