MSGA issues support for Secretary Zinke’s “Sue and Settle” Order

Today the Montana Stockgrowers Association issued support of the Department of Interior’s September 7, Secretarial Order 3368, regarding “sue and settle”.

“Ranchers in Montana are often subjected to unnecessary and relentless litigation brought by extreme environmental groups,” said Bryan Mussard, President of the Montana Stockgrowers Association. “These actions waste taxpayer dollars; funds that should be utilized for wildfire prevention and improving the management of public lands are instead diverted to forced settlements. Under Secretary Zinke’s leadership, we have seen action to engage the BLM to manage the public land according to its original purpose and not be stifled by the fear of litigation.”

Montana Stockgrowers Association secures $300 million agreement for Montana beef

(Nov 8) – The Montana Stockgrowers Association (MSGA), Cross Four Ranch, and Chinese eCommerce retailer, today, signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) to facilitate collaboration on Montana sourced beef to China as well as the potential investment in Montana.

This agreement transpired following Daines’ agricultural roundtable where Chinese Ambassador Cui Tiankai, Chinese business representatives, and Montana agricultural leaders discussed potential opportunities for expanding Montana beef exports.

“While there are details to be finalized, this MOA represents a great step in the right direction for Montana ranchers and the state of Montana,” said Errol Rice, Executive Vice President of MSGA. “The Montana Stockgrowers Association thanks, Sen. Daines for his work on expanding opportunities and access to overseas markets for Montana ranchers, particularly in lifting the ban on U.S. beef in China earlier this year. ”

The agreement is proposed for an initial three years, with a minimum commitment of $200 million in Montana beef to be imported by from MSGA members. Beef is the fastest growing sector in China and the world’s fastest growing overseas market for beef.

In addition to the $200 million proposed procurement, JD intends to invest up to another $100 million to build a brand-new processing facility in Montana to support Montana beef production.

Click HERE to read the official signing agreement. For additional information, please contact the MSGA office at 406-442-3420.


The Montana Stock Growers Association (MSGA) is a non-profit membership organization that has worked on behalf of Montana’s cattle ranching families since 1884. The mission is to protect and enhance Montana ranch families’ ability to grow and deliver safe, healthy, environmentally wholesome beef to the world.

The association works to achieve its mission by representing the members and the policy they set at the Montana Legislature and U.S. Congress, with governmental agencies, in the media, and by promoting the work of Montana’s family ranchers to the public.

Electric City to host Montana Stockgrowers Association’s MidYear Meeting

Electric City to host Montana Stockgrowers Association’s MidYear Meeting

Helena, MT – The Montana Stockgrowers Association’s MidYear Meeting will be held June 9-11 in Great Falls at the Hilton Garden Inn. This year’s MidYear event will be highlighted by a Cattlemen’s College workshop, policy committee meetings and a tour of Ryan Dam!

Mid-Year is one of two major meetings MSGA holds annually where members will gather to discuss the issues facing Montana ranching families and set interim policy to guide the association through the rest of the year. Topics that will be covered in policy committee meetings include the Yellowstone grizzly bear delisting, brucellosis, elk management, the bison quarantine and an update from the Department of Livestock’s executive officer.

The Cattlemen’s College workshops presented by Carrie Mess will kick off events on Thursday afternoon. Ranchers will have the opportunity to learn how to effectively communicate their story and connect, both online and in person with their customers. Area business leaders and the community are invited to a special fundraiser event on Thursday night for MSGA’s Research & Education Endowment Foundation, held at the Hilton Garden Inn with live music by Insufficient Funds Band.

Friday’s Opening General Session will feature a panel of supply chain stakeholders who have formalized Canada’s beef sustainability program and the progress being made in the U.S. The panel includes Bob Lowe, the Alberta Beef Producers Chair; Nancy Labbe, Senior officer of World Wildlife Fund’s sustainable ranching program; and Emily Murray, General Manager of McDonald’s Beef at Cargill.

After policy meetings Friday morning, Ranchers will gather for a Tour of local businesses followed by a steak dinner, fun and music!

For more information about MSGA’s 2016 Mid-Year Meeting, contact MSGA’s office at (406) 442-3420 or join the Facebook event. Visit for more details.


Images of speakers available at:



The Montana Stockgrowers Association, a non-profit organization representing nearly 2,500 members, strives to serve, protect and advance the economic, political, environmental and cultural interests of cattle producers, the largest sector of Montana’s number one industry – agriculture.

Eastern Montana Updates from MSGA Directors

Southeastern District Update from Terry Haughian, Kinsey

Terry Haughian, MSGA Director for the Southeastern District

Terry Haughian, MSGA Director for the Southeastern District

I hope everyone has had a great summer. So far, this area has not had any real bad hail or fires. Last year this whole area was hit hard by hail, the King Valley was hit twice and the Circle County hit hard. We have had a great grass year and a great year to refill reservoirs and pits. It looks like a very good “perfect storm” year with calf markets as good as they are.

I have visited with several producers who are interested in joining MSGA because of all the issues concerning bison, water rights, sage grouse, etc. I plan to follow up after haying season is over. The good markets should help with membership this year. I believe the mid—year meetings at different venues around the state help people realize that MSGA is alive and well and a viable entity for them to take part in. I encourage all members to converse with producers in your area at the fairs, rodeo and events going on nearby. Happy Pre-Vac and shipping to all!

Northeastern District Update from Lee Cornwell, Glasgow

Lee Cornwell, MSGA Director from the Northeastern District

Lee Cornwell, MSGA Director from the Northeastern District

Things in Northeastern Montana have been busy with hay and harvest this summer. Producers have enjoyed good weather for the season as most dry land hay is already put up and the combines are rolling. Ranchers should enjoy a good Fall weaning season as calf prices are expected to remain near record highs.

Many producers have been concerned about bison management discussions throughout the state and MSGA has continued to be involved in these. Rail transportation for many grain crops has seen quite a backlog this year as farmers compete with other commodities and oil traffic. These backlogs seem to be easing up as harvest progresses and grain needs to be transported.

We have continued to be involved in discussions with the Board of Livestock concerning the DOL budget process and I believe the subcommittee focusing to correct these problems is a positive step in the right direction.

I am enjoying the opportunity to be involved in my first year on the MSGA Board of Directors and look forward to being involved in the many meetings we have scheduled this Fall season.

Montana Ford Stores Continues Partnership with Stockgrowers for Sixth Year

2014 Montana Ford Super Duty TruckHelena, Mont. – The Montana Stockgrowers Association (MSGA) and Montana Ford Stores are entering their sixth year as partners, designating Ford “The Official Truck of the Montana Stockgrowers Association.” MSGA and the Montana Ford Stores will give away a Ford Super Duty truck to one lucky MSGA member at the Montana Stockgrowers’ 2014 Annual Convention and Trade Show at the Holiday Inn Grand Montana in Billings, Dec. 11-13.

“We are very grateful for the continued partnership with the Montana Ford Stores,” said Tucker Hughes, MSGA President. “This winter and spring have been a true testament to the toughness of our Ford trucks, lots of snow and now mud. Our ranch appreciates the commitment Montana Ford Stores continue to make in our communities and with the Montana Stockgrowers Association!”

Last year’s winners of the Ford Super Duty truck were Jim and May Ann Steinbeisser of Sidney. Steinbeisser, along with his two brothers and two cousins, owns and operates VS Inc., a diversified farm raising several cash crops, feed for their feedlot, and wintering their cows. His father and uncle still participate on this family operation.

The 2014 Ford Super Duty truck will debut at MSGA’s Mid Year Meeting in Miles City, June 13 & 14, and will be featured at several events across Montana throughout the Summer and Fall.

All MSGA Rancher, Young Stockgrower, and Feeder/Stocker members are eligible to win the truck. An entry form must be filled out and the member must be present at Annual Convention when the truck will be given away. To learn more about the MSGA/Ford partnership, please visit or call (406) 442-3420.

Have a photo of Ford vehicles on your place? Post them on social media using the tag #MyMTFord to say thanks to Montana Ford Stores! Or the photos can be emailed to

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Scholarship Available: Montana Educational Heritage

The Montana Stockgrowers Association’s Research & Education Endowment Foundation is offering a scholarship for one MSGA member student.

Montana Educational Heritage Scholarship PromoFor current college students, the Montana Educational Heritage Scholarship of $1,000 is available. To be eligible, students must be currently enrolled in college and have completed at least one semester in college, be a member of MSGA, or have at least one parent who is a member, and demonstrate a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0.

Applicants must complete the application form, include a copy of their current transcript, write a 500-word essay discussing their educational pursuits and what they hope to do with their education, and include two letters of recommendation.

Applications are due April 15, 2014. You can apply online at

Kelsey Haughian Heritage Award “The Foundation’s continued support of college students is imperative for ranchers like me to further our education goals. The scholarship I received has allowed me to feel financially secure in my junior year of college at Montana State University,” said Kelsey Haughian, 2013 award recipient from Miles City, MT.

For more information on these scholarships and to apply online, visit the Montana Stockgrowers Association’s website at For questions, please email Lauren Chase at If you are interested in these scholarships but are not currently a member of MSGA, join today. Student memberships start at just $20.


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2013 Montana Stockgrowers Convention Trade Show

Annual Convention and Trade Show to be held at the Holiday Inn Grand Montana

2013 Montana Stockgrowers Convention Trade ShowThe 2013 Montana Stockgrowers Association (MSGA) and Montana CattleWomen (MCW) Annual Convention and Trade Show will meet at the Holiday Inn Grand Montana in Billings, Mont. on Dec. 12-14. The Convention will offer opportunities for attendees to learn tips to improve their ranch or business, find out about new products available for their animal health and ranch supply needs at the trade show, and for members to weigh in on policy discussions. Members who attend convention will be eligible to win a Ford Super Duty truck from the Montana Ford Stores.

At this year’s convention we are planning to have several amazing speakers, Sarah Calhoun, Founder and Owner of Red Ants Pants will be the featured speaker of the Opening General Session. The Zoetis Cattlemen’s Colleges will be held on Dec. 12 & Dec. 13 featuring Dr. Derrell Peel, Charles Breedlove Professor of Agribusiness, Larry Gran with Zoetis Animal Health, Dan Ellis with Zoetis Animal Health, and Dr. Rich Linhart, Managing Veterinarian with Zoetis Animal Health. The Zoetis Cattlemen’s College will feature educational topics such as Rebuilding the U.S. Beef Industry: Challenges and Opportunities, What you must know before vaccinating your cow herd: MLV vs. Killed Vaccination choices and Zoetis Ranch: An Interactive Cow Calf Game Designed to Explore Profit Opportunity from EPDs and HD50K Genetic Tests.

A major component of the convention is the setting of new policy and the review of past policies to guide the association through its day-to-day work. The policy process will begin on Thursday, Dec. 12 with the Beef Production & Marketing and Membership Development & Services committee meetings. The Land Use & Environment and Tax, Finance & Ag Policy committee meetings will be on Dec. 13. The Second Reading of Resolutions will be held on the morning of Dec. 14, with reports from each committee. The final reading, and an up or down vote on resolutions, will occur at the MSGA Business Meeting on the afternoon of Dec. 14. Resolutions that make it through the entire process will become association policy.

MSGA and Montana Ford Stores have teamed up to give a Ford Super Duty truck to one lucky member who attends convention. The drawing will be held on Saturday during the Grand Finale Banquet. To be eligible for the truck drawing, you must attend convention, be a current Rancher, Stocker/Feeder or Young Stockgrower member, and fill out the truck entry form.

For a full schedule of events, please click HERE. To learn more, please call the MSGA office at (406) 442-3420, or visit where you can register on-line! Preregistration is available at a discounted rate for those attendees that register prior to Dec. 1. If you would like to reserve a trade show booth or sponsor part of the convention, please contact the MSGA office soon as there are limited spaces open.

Rancher Stewardship: Protecting Montana’s Prairie

In South Phillips County, near the hub of Malta, Montana, ranchers have called the prairie home for over 100 years. Here, ranchers have created a ranch and wildlife haven by working and living in harmony with nature. In this video, ranchers discuss the importance of raising their families here, developing innovative ranch management practices, working in cooperation with each other and building a lasting community to protect these prairielands. Biologists and conservationists from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service also discuss the importance of ranchers in sustaining this diverse ecosystem and the wildlife species it supports. This video is brought to you by the Montana Stockgrowers Association’s Research, Education and Endowment Foundation.