FROM: INDEPENDENT CATTLEMEN OF NEBRASKA, 66455 Ponderosa Rd. , Hyannis, NE 69350
For more information, contact ICON President - Jim Dinklage 402-340-6791, ICON Director - Al Davis: 308-458-9948,
Don Cain - 308-870--0831, Communications Director - Maureen Cain: 308-880-1505
March 14, 2019
The importance of the Mother Cow – the base of Nebraska’s entire beef industry -- was stressed by the Independent Cattlemen of Nebraska on March 5 at the Governor’s Ag conference in Kearney.
ICON Addresses Governor at Ag Leaders Conference
The cow is the “core of the engine that powers the state’s economy,” ICON Director Dr. Don Cain, Jr. said. “The cow is fundamental to the well-being of Nebraska – and contributes in some way to the financial health of every Nebraskan.”
But the cow, and those who take care of her, are not healthy, Cain said. They are having an economic crisis because of high property taxes.
Property taxes in Nebraska are higher than the cost of labor to keep a cowherd. The cow receives no direct US government subsidies, but she is saddled with the burden of paying more property taxes in Nebraska than any other state in the USA. Because of that, Nebraska’s cow herd has dropped in numbers, while South Dakota cow numbers have increased by 8%.
Cain urged Gov. Pete Ricketts to reduce the high property tax burden. If there is no tax relief, Cain warned that every community will be negatively affected, as vital as the beef industry is to Nebraska’s economy. Without the cow, Cain said, “there is no beef industry, unless you grow it all in a lab -- and that’s not beef.”
Another problem noted was the repeal of the Country of Origin Labeling law. COOL forced meat sellers to label where their products came from. Without COOL, packaging companies are making products that are falsely labeled as domestic. This has caused the cow to be cheated out of revenue, and it has hurt the great reputation that beef produced in Nebraska deserves.
Getting tax relief and a restored system of mandatory labeling will help the cow be healthy again and the whole state will see economic benefits, Cain said.
Dr. Don Cain is a 5th generation cow-calf producer and a practicing veterinarian of 35 years. He lives in Broken Bow. The Independent Cattlemen of Nebraska (ICON) represents, promotes, and protects the interests of the state’s independent cattle producers and feeders.
INDEPENDENT CATTLEMEN OF NEBRASKA