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  • Last modified 72 days ago (June 7, 2017)

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County ranks 12th in cattle

Staff writer

Despite a downturn in prices that farmers have received in recent years, cattle production continues unabated.

Kansas cattle have increased from 6.25 million in January 2016 to 6.4 million this January, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service.

Marion County tied for 12th place, with an estimated 105,000. The number remained unchanged from a year ago. Less than 40 percent are cows. Most are calves and feeder cattle.

Only two counties, Barton and Grant, had a decrease. Seven counties, including Butler, gained cattle. The others are in the southwestern part of the state.

Milk production in Kansas was up 7 percent from a year ago in April, and the number of milk cows was up by 9,000 head.

Someone once said, “Ag is not a job. It’s a way of life.”

Kansas State University extension agent Rickey Roberts talked about why farmers continue to forge ahead despite the odds against them.

“Agriculture works a little different than, say, manufacturing companies,” he said. “They can change what they manufacture, but production agriculture is different.

“We have resources, and we can’t just leave them empty or unused. If we have grass, we can’t not use the grass. If we have a feedlot, what would we do with it without cattle? If we do not use it, a tremendous amount of capital would not be used.”

Last modified June 7, 2017

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