Local cattlemen hold annual meeting

By BRAD GASKINS/Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA — The Shelby County Cattlemen’s Association gathered Tuesday night, Jan. 18 for its annual meeting at Columbiana United Methodist Church.

The 106 cattlemen, cattlewomen and guests ate a steak dinner and dessert and then heard from guest speaker Danny Miller, a county agent from Cherokee County, who spoke on current issues confronting cattlemen.

Miller is heavily involved in animal agriculture production, producing beef cattle, poultry and swine. He said the cattle industry is presently in a “unique” situation.

The price of corn and the price of cattle are up, something Miller said usually doesn’t happen at the same time. Normally, he said, if one goes up then the other goes down.

“This is the first time, other than a short microeconomic situation, where corn is soaring and cattle is soaring,” said Miller, noting that beef consumption is up worldwide while the number of cattle in the United States has decreased.

Normally, Miller said, cattlemen are concerned with maximizing production. Now, he said, cattlemen are paying more attention to minimizing input.

Miller then went through a list of 10 technical points for cattlemen to consider regarding minimizing input.

“I thought it was very good,” Shelby County Cattlemen’s Association President Ronnie Cook said of the presentation. “It’s the kind of stuff that we kind of know about in the back of our minds, but as far as putting it in actual terms, I doubt a lot of folks had seen it put together on paper what it really means.”

The cattlemen held a business meeting afterwards and elected new officers.

Cook was elected to another term as president. Sam Phillips will remain secretary and Leland Atchison will remain treasurer. Sam Bristow was elected first vice-president, and Harold Hughes was elected second vice-president.

The cattlemen donated $2,000 to Columbiana United Methodist’s Honduras Mission Fund. The church provided all the food except the steaks and should have about $1,500 left after expenses to put towards the mission trip, Cook said.

Moving forward, the cattlemen are preparing for their biggest fundraiser of the year, a rodeo to be held Feb. 25-26 at the Columbiana Exhibition Center. Money raised is donated to local organizations.

In the last 22 years, the cattlemen have donated about $600,000 to local groups like 4-H and FFA, Cook said.