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R-Calf USA

The largest national producer-only cattle trade association, R-CALF USA, will hold its 20th Anniversary Convention Aug. 15-16 at The Lodge at Deadwood, 100 Pine Crest Lane.

"This convention holds promise to mark significant and beneficial changes to the course of the U.S. cattle industry. This is an opportunity to learn the truth about what's happening in your industry and who's driving the industry in the wrong direction," said R-CALF USA CEO Bill Bullard. "Armed with the information producers will receive at the convention, we hope they will be able to provide even more help as we steer the industry on a course that provides opportunities for producers to remain independent."

All members who want to attend should contact the R-CALF office or register online at www.RCALFConvention.com.

The convention opens at 8 a.m. Aug. 15. Thursday morning's presentations include "The Truth About the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef" from Wyoming rancher and attorney Tracy Hunt of MW Cattle Company followed by the president of the American Antitrust Institute, Dr. Diana Moss's "Antitrust Update – The Role of Public and Private Enforcement in Food and Agriculture."

Thursday's luncheon speakers will be Ken Charfauros, owner of Wall Meat Processing and R-CALF USA Region I Director George Wishon. Wall Meats Processing is providing the USA-born, raised, and harvested beef that will be served at the convention. Charfauros will speak about getting USA beef into South Dakota Public Schools and Wishon will speak on country-of-origin labeling in the Washington Post as well as the predatory issue in Washington.

Thursday's afternoon presentations include "Threats to Animal Ownership" from Dave Duquette, Strategic Planner for Protect The Harvest, followed by "The Unconstitutional Checkoff" from David Muraskin of Public Justice, lead counsel on R-CALF USA's checkoff lawsuit; and "The Fed Cattle Cartel Litigation" by Patrick McGahan of Scott+Scott, lead counsel for R-CALF USA's antitrust lawsuit. The afternoon wraps up with Atlas Tool Works Zach Mottl's "The Impact of Globalization and Current Trade Reforms."

Thursday evening attendees can ride a trolley to the Days of '76 Museum for a chuckwagon dinner and welcome from Deadwood Mayor David Ruth. The Days of '76 Museum tours are $5 per person.

Friday begins early with a 7 a.m. prayer breakfast led by Max Thornsberry, DVM, R-CALF USA former president. Following breakfast, Bill Bullard will give the CEO Report.

Friday's morning presentations include "Women in Ranching" from Nevada rancher Kris Stewart of Ninety-Six Ranch, the oldest ranch in Nevada, followed by "What You Don't Know About Trade and Its Impact on Your Country and Your Cattle" by Brian O'Shaughnessy, Principal Owner of Revere Copper Products. Revere was founded by Paul Revere in 1801 and is the oldest basic manufacturing company in the United States.

R-CALF USA Region III Director Brett Kenzy will speak about ranchers and social media and Region VII Director Eric Nelson will give an update on the Iowa Premium and National Beef Merger.

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Friday's luncheon speakers will be Greg Owens, owner of Sherrill Manufacturing/Liberty Table Top and R-CALF USA Animal Identification Committee Chair Kenny Fox from South Dakota. Owens will speak on the Made in America movement and Fox will give a report on the U.S. Department of Agriculture's plan to move forward with a required electronic identification program for cattle.

Friday afternoon a panel of auction yard owners, managers and auctioneers will discuss the Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) certification program and its impact on U.S. independent cattle producers. The panel includes Greg Arendt, manager of Valentine Livestock Auction from Nebraska; Bryan Hanson, R-CALF USA former president and owner of Fort Pierre Livestock Auction from South Dakota; Kyle Hemmert, R-CALF USA Vice President and owner of Oakley Livestock Commission Company from Kansas; and Matt Lowery, an auctioneer from Burwell, Nebraska. The business session, where proposed policy resolutions are brought forward and directors nominated, will finish the day.

The convention wraps up with an evening awards banquet, saddle raffle, book signing, and keynote address delivered by Fox Nation host Tomi Lahren to R-CALF USA members. Lahren, a South Dakota native, is championing the restoration of mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL) for beef.

Range Allotment Owners (RAO) will host "Property Rights Day" the day before the convention on Wednesday, August 14 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at The Lodge. Anyone who would like to attend RAO's Property Rights Day should call Angus McIntosh at 970-213-1005 or email angusmcintosh2@yahoo.com.

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