by Megan Richner

The Cedar County Cattleman’s Association kicked off the Christmas season by hosting a toy drive in conjunction with their member meeting on Dec. 1 in the Ray H. Zumwalt Expo Center, Stockton. Over 60 toys were donated and will be distributed to children in need in the El Dorado Springs and Stockton schools.

Clay Doeden called the meeting to order, said the prayer and dinner was served.

Tom Bryant, state director, reminded members about the Missouri Cattleman’s Association (MCA) convention in January.

Old Business: During the October member meeting, bylaw changes were made. Elections were also held. Officer changes for 2017 included: Billy Bruce, President and Clay Doeden, Vice President. Secretary, treasurer, state director and board members will remain the same.

New Business: The Missouri Cattlemen’s Annual Meeting will be Jan. 6-8.  Early registration ends Dec.11. The MCA policy book is online for members to review. Members discussed issues and policy changes for the upcoming year.

Cedar County submitted an application for the MCA Awards for Excellence on Nov. 29. The winner will receive a set of True Test Scales.

It is time to start planning for the 2017 scholarships. All members interested in serving on the scholarship committee should contact an officer or board member.

The Veterinary Feed Directive was discussed. This will go into effect Jan. 1, 2017, and prohibits feed grade and water soluble antibiotics to be fed without vet approval. Dr. Brent Lower, Tri-Lakes Animal Clinic, weighed in on the conversation, sharing his knowledge with members. Producers are encouraged to develop a relationship with veterinarians and feed companies.

The sponsor for the evening was Legacy Farm and Lawn. Clayton Rains and Kim McGuire, sales representatives, and Brandon Watkins, parts manager, spoke to members about the diversity of John Deere equipment and how they can be tailored to fit the needs of any producers. They showcased two of their base tractors and a bailer, answered questions and held a drawing for John Deere caps, ornaments, calendars, etc.

The next member meeting will begin at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 2, at the Land O’ Lakes Youth Fairgrounds in El Dorado Springs. Please bring a dessert. The next board meeting will be on Jan. 5 in El Dorado Springs.