Beef Demand vs. Growing Cattle Supplies in 2018
Demand has proven the key to holding livestock markets in the black during 2017.
Despite increasing beef production, cattle feeders experienced a booming market last spring that padded closeouts at times in excess of $400 per head. Demand, industry analysts say, was the driving force that kept pulling cattle forward and in the process a steep decline in carcass weights.
That windfall for feedyards fueled the desire for replacement cattle, supporting prices for feeder cattle and calves at unanticipated levels.
"Strong demand for beef kept pulling cattle forward, and feedyards had the incentive to bid up replacements," says Sterling Marketing president John Nalvika. "That put a lot of dollars in ranchers pockets for feeder cattle that we didn't think would be there at the beginning of the year."
Now the question on rancher's minds is, "Can demand continue to support the growing supplies?"
The short answer is, "Yes, but probably not without a modest decline in prices."
That's your Land and Livestock Report-I'm Russell Nemetz.