SIDNEY, Mont. (June 15, 2022) – The Montana Stockgrowers Association (MSGA) wrapped up the 138th MidYear Meeting on Friday, June 3 in Sidney, Montana. The event hosted over 100 attendees who gathered for three days of education, policy, fellowship and fun.
The MidYear Meeting is one of two meetings that is held to set association policy that guides the Association through the year. Interim policy set at MidYear will be voted on again at Annual Convention for it to become official MSGA policy. While the main focus of the meeting is for the setting of interim policy, MSGA also uses the meeting as a networking opportunity for the MSGA membership.
Members of the association voted to support interim policy supporting the establishment and implementation of a Montana statewide checkoff that is producer driven and producer-led. The interim policy outlined desired parameters such as a mandatory one dollar per head assessment, a refund provision, and the desire for the program to be administered by the Montana Beef Council and collected by the Montana Department of Livestock.
“A state checkoff would allow for Montana to promote beef and beef products, enhance the image of Montana’s beef industry, fund issues management, production research, education, and expand domestic and international beef markets,” stated Kristin Larson, a local Sidney producer who is serving on a producer-led working group for a statewide checkoff.
Other interim policies that were passed included MSGA opposing constitutional ballot initiative 121 (CI-121) and support for the removal of North Dakota’s Official Calfhood Brucellosis vaccine (OCV) requirement for importation of Montana cattle.
National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) CEO, Colin Woodall, opened the event on June 2, and discussed the work NCBA has done in the last year including fake meat and market transparency. Also in attendance, Vice President and Dean of the College of Agriculture at Montana State University (MSU), Sreekala Bajwa, shared updates on the college’s animal and range sciences programs.
The Mannix Brothers Ranch of Helmville, Montana, were announced as the 2022 Montana Environmental Stewardship Program (ESAP) winner for their work in sustainability. Each year, the ESAP award recognizes a Montana ranch that exemplifies environmental stewardship and demonstrates a commitment toward improved sustainability within the beef industry.
The evening followed with the Sunset After Party Banquet where the Montana Stockgrowers Foundation (MSF) held an auction and raffle. Proceeds raised by MSF help ensure the future of Montana’s cattle industry through producer and public education, and promotion of MSGA programs.
Friday morning started as Wally Badgett, cartoonist of popular cowboy cartoon Earl, gave a humorous presentation as he shared the stories and life lessons of his last 50 or more years.
During Closing General Session, Stuart Ellis-Myers worked with the audience to breakthrough the mental health stigma and offered attendees immediately usable, professional and personal life saving lessons.
For more information on MSGA or the MidYear Meeting, visit www.mtbeef.org
The Montana Stockgrowers Association is a grassroots membership organization and is the trusted voice of cattle ranchers. With a 135 year history, MSGA advocates and ensures cattle ranching remains relevant, safe and a sustainable way of life for generations to come.