Stockgrowers’ Midyear Meeting Ends in Great Falls


The 2016 Montana Stockgrowers Association’s Mid-Year Meeting, held in Great Falls on June 9 – 10, drew ranchers and members of the cattle industry from across the state for policy meetings, a leadership-training workshop, and a Tour of Ryan Dam.



Ranchers in attendance kicked off the event by taking part in a workshop with Carrie Mess. Mess is a dairy farmer, blogger and ag-vocate from Wisconsin. Ranchers of all ages participated in the informative workshop, learning how to engage with their customers and effectively communicate their story.



A welcome reception was held to benefit the Stockgrowers’ Research and Education Endowment Foundation. The reception included a live auction and recognition of Foundation programs, including scholarship recipients, Young Cattlemen’s Conference Attendees, and an introduction of the inaugural Leadership Series class.



A few of the topics discussed during interim-policy meetings included the proposed Yellowstone Grizzly Bear Delisting, bison management, feedlot well setbacks, and the new Department of Labor overtime rule that will go into effect this December. Four interim policies were passed by the Board of Directors, they are available on MSGA’s website. These policies will be reviewed by the membership at the Annual Convention in December.



Opening General Session featured a panel on beef sustainability. The panel included Emily Murray, General Manager of McDonald’s Beef at Cargill; Bob Lowe, the Alberta Beef Producers Chair; and Nancy Labbe, Senior officer of World Wildlife Fund’s sustainable ranching program.  The three panel members were instrumental in creating a pilot project in Canada aimed at establishing an independent sustainable verification process in partnership with multiple stakeholders. As one of the world’s largest purchasers of beef, McDonald’s has identified beef sustainability as a key business priority and is committed to being more progressive in partnering with industry to advance sustainable practices to better the lives of cattle, ranchers and consumers.



Friday afternoon, attendees traveled to Ryan Dam for a tour of the six-unit hydroelectric plant on the Missouri River. After touring the dam, they traveled to Western Ranch Supply for a social followed by a tour and dinner at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center.


“Stockgrowers can’t thank the community of Great Falls enough for welcoming our MidYear event into town,” said MSGA President Gene Curry, from Valier. “Our members really enjoyed learning more about the area and the businesses that make it thrive. We look forward to the next time our MidYear is held in Great Falls.”



The Stockgrowers’ Annual Convention and Trade Show, taking place December 7 through 9 at the Radisson in Billings. To learn more about Montana Stockgrowers membership, programs and events, visit or contact the MSGA office at 406-442-3420.



Source:  Montana Stockgrowers Association



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