(Jamie) We’re back with Kyle and Dr. Henry, who updates us on the swine industry in Kansas.
(Kyle) Hi, this is Kyle Bauer. I have the opportunity to visit with Steve Henry, Dr. Steve Henry, a veterinarian from Abilene, longtime practice in the area that has specialized in swine. You’ve seen swine operations across this entire country, so I will ask you. What is the state of the swine industry in the state of Kansas? (Steve) Kyle, the swine industry in the state of Kansas is a longtime part of our agricultural family here. What we do with the pigs is we increase the value of our grains. Right now, most of the operations in Kansas are Kansas producers, Kansas families, Kansas family corporations and LLCs. Our industry hasn’t grown a great deal over the years, but it’s been very stable and it’s a very high level, high quality production, when you compare it to the rest of the nation. (Kyle) In Kansas, we’ve almost led the nation on waste control, waste management. When it comes to livestock, we have a lot of different kinds of livestock. Would you agree with that statement? (Steve) Certainly. If you remember back in the ’90s, we passed some legislation, House Bill 2950, that included some environmental components to it. What could be the maximum levels of phosphorus in the soil? What could be the nitrogen applications? The purpose of those was to protect the waters of Kansas. That’s what those things have done. We have levels that are more stringent in Kansas than any of the states surrounding us in much of the pork production states, which has been wonderful for protecting our environment and it’s also been really good for our crops, and crop producers. (Kyle) It’s also though, I will say good for the livestock producers in that you know exactly what the rules are, and you know the rules are safe and so you know how to manage for that. (Steve) That’s true, we know what the requirements are, and through programs such as Kansas GOLD through the Kansas Pork Association, we have professional advisors that can help us figure out just how much we can put on based on what crop is going on, based on what the yield is. What you have is a professionally managed nutrient management system that benefits you the crop farmer and me as a livestock producer in the state of Kansas. (Kyle) It seems to me to grow an industry, you have to have processing. As I watch the Triumph Facility built in the northeast corner of the state or right on the state line, I thought we saw increased pork production because of that. When we saw the facility go into Guymon, in southwest Kansas, does Kansas, in order to grow the industry, do we have to grow more processors? (Steve) I don’t believe so, personally. I think we have the processors in place now. Triumph has been a huge boon to all of us in Kansas, whether we sell directly to them or whether that increases the competition for other market sources around. Crete, Nebraska; Fremont, Madison, Ottumwa. Also we’re going to have probably five new pork processing plants by late ‘17 in the US. We’ll have for the first time, a lot of state-of-the-art modern new facilities, and processing capacity so personally, I think about the last thing Kansas has to worry about is more pork processing. (Kyle) We’re visiting with Dr. Steve Henry from Abilene. This is Kyle Bauer reporting. Back to you, Jamie.
(Jamie) Thanks, Kyle! Folks, be sure and stay tuned for one producer’s thoughts about change in the cattle industry.