2017 KY State Fair Recap – Kentucky Beef Council

With the fair board thinking outside the box and a change in facility layout everyone was excited to make the trip to the 2017 Kentucky State Fair. As always the Kentucky Beef Council was on site with lots of events happening every day. We showcased local producers at the commodity breakfast and on the gourmet garden cooking stage, revamped our education space at the “big red barn”, and added a little competition with our Backyard Burger Contest and Cooks vs. Cons.

State Fair is a time to showcase our great commodities and the people who produce them. With Kentucky’s booming local product market the Kentucky Beef Council decided to highlight some of those farmers during morning media coverage of the commodity breakfast. This year we were able to highlight KY Darling Meats, Sherwood Acres Beef, Harrison County High School FFA Chapter, and Kentucky Hemp Dawgs. Each producer was able to highlight their products and talk with television stations. We also gave other local producers the chance to talk about their operations and products on our Gourmet Garden cooking stage. These were very popular segments, giving the public a chance to interact with farmers and ask questions.

We partnered with the Kentucky Soybean Board again this year in our “big red barn” education space. This year we added an antique John Deere Model A (special thanks to Mr. Bill Robertson), a corner dedicated to the sustainable practices being implemented by the soybean and beef industries, and the back of the barn was a collage of Kentucky’s great farming families. We value our relationship with the Kentucky Soybean Board, we are able to answer the tough questions about antibiotics and GMO’s to ensure the public that those popular myths are not true. Virtual reality was the center of our exhibit this year, with revamped videos that make it easier for visitors to understand exactly what it is they are seeing.

On the gourmet garden stage we increased the number of cooking demonstrations, showcased the new Cooks vs. Cons contest, as well as hosted the second Backyard Burger contest. Beef demonstrations on the stage have always incorporated basic beef knowledge such as proper cooking temperatures and cuts of beef, but this year we took it a step further highlighting beef as a breakfast food, quick and simple recipes to make beef the life of any party. Cooks vs. Cons pairs a trained chef with someone who simply enjoys cooking, to face off in preparing dishes based on mystery ingredients and beef cut. Judges were chosen from the audience, to pick a winning dish as well as decide who is the cook and who is the con. The second Backyard Burger contest had over 30 burger entries competing for a blue ribbon and the right to be crowned the 2017 Kentucky State Fair Burger. During the contest judging, we hosted cooking demonstrations while keeping the crowd on their toes with beef trivia.

The 2017 Kentucky State Fair proved that changes and new ideas are a great thing! We were able to reach more consumers and producers through our changes, and promote beef in an even bigger way. We are already in the works for the 2018 Kentucky State Fair!


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KJCA Field Day at Bell’s Angus Farm

The Kentucky Junior Cattlemen’s Association had their Summer Field Day at Bell’s Angus Farm in Irvington on August 2nd. Around thirty-five youth from across the state, along with their parents, came together on the beautiful Registered Angus farm in Breckinridge County to learn about agriculture and beef cattle genetics.  KJCA Officers, Sara Crutcher (President) and Kalli Flanders (Reporter), were on hand to welcome the group to the field day.

Bobby Bell, a third generation cattle farmer, gave an overview of the Bell’s operation. Bobby’s father, Floyd Bell, along with Bobby and his family, run 30 Registered Angus cows on their 65 acre farm.  Bobby explained how they use EPD’s in selecting breeding stock with superior genetic merit to increase the economic importance of their herd. Dr. Darrh Bullock, UK Beef Cattle Genetics Extension Professor, spoke to the crowd more on EPD’s and why it is important for a producer to make good bull decisions when selecting for genetics.

Afterwards, the junior members participated in some Agriculture Literacy games provided by the Breckinridge and Grayson County Extension Office. The event ended with the Breckinridge County Cattlemen’s Association providing a delicious lunch with products from the KY Proud garden at the Breckinridge County Extension Office.

The Kentucky Junior Cattlemen’s Association would like to thank the Bell family for hosting this year’s field day as well as the Breckinridge County Cattlemen’s Association; Breckinridge County Ag Agent, Carol Hinton; Grayson County Ag Agent, Whitney Carman; and Dr. Darrh Bullock for their time and dedication to the event. Because of their generosity, the Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association is able to continue its outreach for youth in the cattle industry.

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The Kentucky Cattleman Newsletter – Read Current/Past Issues


The Official E-Newsletter of the Kentucky Cattlemen's Association, Kentucky Beef Network, Kentucky Beef Council and Eden Shale Farm

Newsletter Sign-up:

2017 Issues


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Beef Solutions Gets Approval for Ground Beef Project

KY Beef Packaging Mock Up

Beef Solutions Gets Approval for Ground Beef Project

LEXINGTON, KY. (May 19, 2017) – On Friday, May 19, Beef Solutions, LLC received funding from the Kentucky Agricultural Development Fund. Beef Solutions, LLC was formed to provide a pathway for Kentucky’s cattle producers to enter the market for locally produced and marketed ground beef, guiding the product from the Kentucky farm to the meat counter.

Beef Solutions will provide a way for Kentucky consumers to purchase local ground beef and a way for Kentucky retailers to have a reliable, source verified product. While it will probably be fall before the product hits the shelves, the venture will provide a fresh, local 80/20 Kentucky ground beef product, “Kentucky Cattlemen’s Ground Beef”, that will be available to purchase in 1 pound packages.

“Our producers are thrilled to finally be able to offer Kentucky beef to consumers across the Commonwealth,” stated Dave Maples, Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association Executive Vice President. “As the largest beef producing state east of the Mississippi River, it is only fitting that we have our very own Kentucky beef product.”

The funding through the Agricultural Development Board includes a grant in the amount of $127,096 to begin operations and sustain the business until its operations have reached a sufficient scale to sustain itself. The project will be worked on throughout the summer and a plan for a Kentucky Proud ground beef product to be on Kroger shelves is planned for Fall 2017. For more information contact the KCA office at 859-278-0899.

Visit the official product website at


Beef Solutions is a single-owner Limited Liability Company, owned by the Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association, Inc., a 501 (c)(5) member-driven organization of cattle producers in Kentucky, consisting of 99 chapters across the Commonwealth and representing the interests of Kentucky’s 38,000 cattle producers.

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Beef Education Center Set to Open This Fall

The Yards

Beef Education Center Set to Open This Fall

LEXINGTON, KY. (May 19, 2017) – The Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association is proud to announce that it will be supporting a beef education center set to open this fall at the Blue Grass Stockyards Regional Marketplace called The Yards.

The Yards is an acronym for Teaching, Health, Environment, Youth, Agricultural Advocacy, Research, Demonstration and Scientific Learning. It will be an educational facility focusing on the science and practices of the beef industry. The concept was created when Blue Grass Livestock Marketing Group opted to give a teaching space to the beef industry in their new stockyards being built off of I-75 in Fayette County. The classroom will provide a unique learning experience for all based on its location. In addition to The Yards, the Marketplace will include business, shopping, a full-service restaurant and the stockyards.

The educational space will be available to everyone but a highlight will be local students, ranging from kindergarten through college that will be able to come to the facility and learn more about the beef industry in Kentucky. The space will also host association groups, agricultural industry events and an overall experience for consumers to be educated about beef from pasture to plate.

The New Bluegrass Stockyards

“We are so lucky to have an opportunity to impact so many people through this classroom,” stated Dave Maples, Executive Vice President for the Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association. “It will provide a unique experience to work with students, producers, industry partners and consumers.”

Farm Credit Mid-America is the main sponsor of the classroom. Farm Credit Mid America is dedicated to youth in Kentucky and this partnership will support programs already in place, like the Heifer Initiative program. The facility is set to open in early September 2017. If you have questions or would like to inquire about reserving the space, please call Niki Ellis at 859-278-0899.



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Midwest Fires – Response & Donation Information

LOCAL KY Response

Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association continues to send our thoughts and prayers to the ranching communities affected by the devastating fires throughout the Midwest last week. There is an immediate need for fencing supplies in these areas. The following includes various relief efforts throughout Kentucky to support those ranchers.

Breckinridge County
The Breckinridge County Extension Service will be collecting fencing donations at their office located at 1377 S Hwy 261, Hardinsburg, KY 40143. You can also drop-off donations at the Hancock, Daviess, Webster, Meade, and Ohio County Extension Offices, which will then be delivered to Breckinridge County. You can contact Bobby Bell at (270) 547-8547, Evan Tate at (270) 668-3167, or Jeremy Armstrong at (270) 668-2056.

Hayden Farms – Daviess County
You can contact Daniel Hayden at (270) 570-2815 if you would like to coordinate a drop-off with him.

Clark County
You can contact the Southern States of Winchester store at (859) 744-3313 or contact Mike Stokley at 859-771-9195.

Monetary donations can also be sent to the Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association office located at 176 Pasadena Drive, Lexington, KY 40503. Checks can be made payable to Kentucky Cattlemen’s Foundation. Please note Disaster Fund – Wildfire in the memo line on the check.


Fire Response Information

The following includes information compiled on various relief efforts to support those ranchers affected by the devastating fires throughout the Midwest this week. The Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association sends our thoughts and prayers to the ranching and fire-fighting communities battling these fires and the difficult road ahead of putting lives back together.

The most recent and updated information has been posted at at



Ashland Fire Response: The command center for coordination of people to receive or give help is Ashland Veterinary Center. Dr. Randall Spare is heading this up. The number for people to call is 620-635-2641. Anybody in the Ashland area that needs help should please call the veterinary clinic. Also, anybody heading to Ashland to help, please call the clinic so we get people to the places of need.

The second center is coordinating hay delivery for cattle. The Neal and Jeff Kay at Ashland Feed and Seed is coordinating this effort and all hay deliveries should go to them at 1975 County Road U, Ashland, Kansas (on the south end of Main Street on the south end of town). The number to call before heading out is 785-273-5115.

Kansas Livestock Association is organizing hay and fencing material donations for delivery to affected areas in Kansas. To make in-kind donations, call KLA at (785) 273-5115. Cash donations can be made through the Kansas Livestock Foundation (KLF), KLA’s charitable arm, by going to

Sisters of the Kansas State University chapter of Sigma Alpha have started a fundraiser to further support those affected by the fires in Kansas. They are selling “Pray for the Plains” t-shirts, and all proceeds will be donated to the Kansas Livestock Association to help ranchers affected by the fires. Click here to buy a shirt.



There is an immediate need for hay, feed, fencing supplies, individuals willing to provide trucking, etc. for the farmers and ranchers devastated by yesterday’s fires. Donations should be taken to CHS Grainland in Haxtun. A loader and scale are both available, if needed. Contact Rick Unrein 970-520-3565 for more information about dropping off donations. Donations can also be dropped off at Justin Price’s farm (11222 CR 7 Sedgwick, CO). For more information, please contact: Kent Kokes 970-580-8108, John Michal 970-522-2330, or Justin Price 970-580-6315.

For more information on how to donate and aid these producers please visit

Checks payable to Colorado Farm Bureau Foundation, cash and credit card payments are being accepted at this time. Please note Disaster Fund-CO Wildfire in the memo line on the check. Cash and checks can be sent to:

Colorado Farm Bureau Foundation

Attn: Disaster Fund

9177 E. Mineral Circle

Centennial, CO 80112



If you would like to donate to this relief effort, you can do so by mail or online. Make checks payable to Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Foundation and put “Fire Relief” in the memo line and send to P.O. Box 82395, Oklahoma City, OK 73148. To donate online, visit

If you would like to donate hay or trucking services for hay, you can do so by contacting either the Harper County Extension Office at 580-735-2252 or Buffalo Feeders at 580-727-5530 to make arrangements or provide trucking services.

Additional contacts for assisting those in need in Oklahoma include:

Tyree Ag / US-283, Laverne, OK, just over 1 mile north of stop light, last business north side of Laverne, east side of the road

Contact – Jay Dee Nielsen / 580-334-6819


Dale Long / 1 mile east, 1Ž2 mile north, 1Ž2 mile east of Gate, OK

Contact – Dale Long / 580-571-1249


May Coop Elevator / May, OK

Contact – Tom Fanning / 580-727-5530


Buffalo Coop / 322 E Harper, Buffalo, OK 73834

Contact – Beverly Mings / 580-735-2533


Western Equipment / 3999 Lakeview Drive, Woodward, OK

Contact – Caleb Zook / 580-254-0080



Two supply points have been established to collect donated hay. Each has been listed below. If you have hay that you can donate and transport to either supply point, please contact the location directly prior to transportation.

Supply Point 1

Lipscomb County Show Facility

202 West Main Street,

Lipscomb, Texas

Contact – J.R. Sprague

Office # 806-862-4601 / Cell # 806-202-5288

Supply Point 2
Clyde Carruth Pavilion
301 Bull Barn Drive
Pampa, Texas
Contact – Mike Jeffcoat
Office # 806-669-8033 / Cell # 580-467-0753

Supply Point 3

Hemphill County Livestock
Hackberry Trail
Canadian, Texas 79011
Contact – Andy Holloway, 806-823-9114


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2017 KCA Convention: Program

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Convention and Trade Show Program


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2017 KCA Convention: Agenda, Trade Show Map, Convention Center & Hotel Map

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Trade Show Map

Convention Center & Hotel Map


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2017 KCA Convention: Event Highlights and Need-to-Knows

The January issue of The Kentucky Cattleman, KCA’s official newsletter, highlights everything you need to know about the 2017 Convention and Ag Industry Trade Show in Lexington, KY before you get there! View the Convention newsletter here:

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More Than A Farmer’s Wife – Sarah Jones

Being a girl was never an excuse I could use to get out of farm chores growing up. I was raised on a 6th generation cattle ranch in California alongside my two older brothers, and although the only daughter and the baby of the family, I was still expected to buck hay bales, brand cattle, and fix fence. Weekends with friends were sacrificed during calving season, manicures and spa days were few and far between. While my older brothers and dad are the skilled mechanics and equipment operators on the ranch, it is my mother and I that managed the majority of the livestock. Being female never made us any less instrumental to the ranch operation, and the boys would never even dream of telling us that our place as a woman belonged in the kitchen (although we can both cook up a mean steak). 

​Too often I feel that the term “farmer” or “rancher” is synonymous with “male.” Since long before the days of wagon wheels and horse drawn plows, women have been a backbone to the agriculture industry. According to the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) the average age of a Kentucky farmer is 58-years-old and a strong majority are male; however, female farmers across the state continue to be an integral part of the industry in production and beyond.

On a visit to southern Kentucky-Tennessee, I met Sarah Jones, a daughter, wife, mother, and I can assure you, just as much of a farmer as anyone that I have ever met, and much more.


Sarah and Bart in front of original Red Hill Farms homestead

Preparation of barn for annual March bull and female sale
Sarah, her husband Bart, and their nine-year-old son Ty farm in Macon County, Tennessee and southern Kentucky across Allen, Warren, and Monroe Counties. They raise seed stock cattle, burley tobacco, purebred hogs, and row crops to support their livestock operations. 

​Even though they were busy preparing for their annual bull and female sale, Sarah was kind enough to show us around the farm and share her story.



I can do anything, but I can’t do everything.

Sarah was raised on a dairy farm and growing up her responsibility was caring for the calves. Although she was raised on a farm, her parents wanted to give her the opportunity to have a future outside of the industry. Sarah hasn’t always worn boots to work. She worked in Nashville as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) for years, but ultimately realized that tax season, managing farm responsibilities, and being a mom all at once was too much. With her CPA expertise, Sarah manages the office side of the farming business such as financials, record keeping, advertising, and marketing. Although, don’t let that fool you into thinking she works at a desk all day. She monitors the heifer barns at night, chops silage, rolls hay, and as the only certified Artificial Insemination (AI) Technician on the farm she is responsible for breeding livestock.
“If he wasn’t at school today, Ty would have loved to give you the farm tour himself,” Sarah said.
Sarah and Bart were both raised around agriculture and feel very fortunate that their son gets to have the same experience. She emphasized that they support Ty no matter what he wants to do in the future, farming or not. At just 9-years-old, Ty has a lamb project, shows pigs, owns his own cattle, plays soccer and basketball, has traveled across the U.S. and already has goals to introduce new breeds of livestock to the farm.

Ty and his lamb project

Bart and Ty with a litter of piglets
Sarah and I shared and reminisced about how there is something special about being raised on a farm. Farm kids learn lessons at a young age that most people don’t. They learn the meaning of sacrifice, knowing that there is a time to work and a time to play. They learn respect, not only for nature’s resources, but also for people and personal relationships.

“Chances are we won’t have to have the sex discussion with Ty,” Sarah laughed. Living on a farm and raising livestock teaches kids about reproduction, about birthing, and about death. They learn to appreciate the lifecycle. It teaches the responsibility of caring for something other than yourself – like making sure the animals are fed before you are, whether sunshine or blizzard. A farm kid learns to be goal oriented and to be driven by passion and not by greed. They learn the definition of hard work but also learn that farming is a labor of love, and it is that which makes a farmer a farmer.


As I spoke with Sarah standing out in the cattle pasture, I couldn’t help but wish that every person got to know a farmer like this. With every question I asked, she answered thoughtfully and sincerely, her love for her farm and family apparent in every sentence she spoke. She has an open and brilliant mind, not only constantly looking for opportunities to improve their farming operation, but also ensuring that the end product of their farm – food— is the safest and most nutritious it can be. She encourages consumers to reach out to farmers to ask their questions rather than getting misinformation on the internet.  The same beef and pork that they raise on their farm for consumers is the same food that she feeds her family. When asked what her favorite cut of beef is she said, “I’m a steak person, sirloin or filet cooked medium rare.”

Sarah’s passion for agriculture radiates from her as she talked about farming. “Along with passion, there is a lot of pride,” she said. Being a steward of the land, turning God-given resources into something, and watching her family learn and grow together makes her proud at the end of the day. For her, “It’s not about getting bigger, but making things better.“ With every day there is a new challenge and at times she admits it feels like a lot to handle. Many people wouldn’t do what they do, what farmers do, working long hours year round to grow food for the world. It is passion that keeps them going, and the world should applaud them for the hard work that they do day in and day out. We should all be thankful for farmers, farmers like Sarah.



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