Beef Buzz News
Livestock Economist Katelyn McCullock Expects Stronger Feeder Cattle Market
Tue, 22 Jun 2021 08:30:28 CDT
Katelyn McCullock, director and senior agricultural economist for the Livestock Marketing Information Center, sees strength in the feeder cattle market and on today’s Beef Buzz explains why she is optimististic.
Ron Hays Beef Buzzes With Katelyn McCullock
We have a situation where there are several factors weighing in here, she said.
A smaller calf crop coupled with stronger beef demand will help support the whole supply chain for the next few years, she said.
The tightening cattle supply should help keep feeder cattle prices elevated, she said.
One concern is the expanding drought in the west, southwest and northern Plains that is worse since 2012 or 2013.
With all these factors going on, McCullock expects feeder cattle prices to be above year ago levels this fall.
She noted there is herd liquidation happening as the drought has reduced forage production.
We’re hearing a lot about cows and pairs going to market because these pastures just can’t support normal stocking density and hay is very expensive, McCullock said.
The livestock economist said the liquidation will lead to a smaller total number come January 1.
Ultimately, we are not hearing of producers retaining heifers or building herds so what that means is smaller cattle supplies, she said.
Another area she is watching closely is the price consumers are willing to pay for food at home and away from home.
We watched this during the pandemic, and it has been interesting to watch the dynamics as everything is reopening, she said.
What we found in May was that food away from home gained about 3.6 percent or more, which is consistent with January to April data, McCullock said.
The food consumed at home, that value was higher as well, she noted.
We’re still looking at very high retail beef prices, she added.
Click on the LISTEN BAR below to hear more comments from McCullock.
The Beef buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today’s show and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.
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