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Beef Buzz News

Light Weight Placements a Prominent Part of Latest Cattle on Feed Report

Tue, 26 Jul 2022 09:30:42 CDT

Light Weight Placements a Prominent Part of Latest Cattle on Feed Report Senior Farm and Ranch Broadcaster, Ron Hays is back with Livestock Market Economist, Dr. Derrell Peel, this time talking about the latest USDA’s NASS cattle on feed report.

“This July cattle on feed report really was well anticipated,” Peel said. “Placements in the month of June came in down 2.4 percent in total. Marketings were about 2 percent above a year ago, and again, both of those were just very close to expectations.”

The on-feed total as of July 1, Peel said, was just slightly over last year at 100.4 percent of last year’s total. What stands out in the report, Peel added, is that this is the second month in a row almost identical to the last monthly cattle on feed report even though the placements are down in total.

“This month is 2.4 percent and last month I think was 2.1 percent,” Peel said. “Placements of cattle under 700 pounds this month is up 4.1 percent, and it was up about 5 percent last month while the placements of cattle over 700 pounds is down 6.1 percent this year.”

What is really emphasized in the last two months, Peel said is that more lightweight cattle are being placed. What this also means, Peel added is that those won’t be there later on to place, so it will catch up at some point.

“The drought is kind of aiding and abetting this,” Peel said. “I think feedlots are just trying to hold numbers.”

Peel said feedlots are trying to keep their volumes up and keep the feed mill running, so that means they are placing whatever they can get. The drought is helping that, Peel added because it is forcing some people to move some cattle in.

“Those lightweight cattle will stay on feed longer because it takes a longer time to finish them,” Peel said. “That is going to help these feedlots hold these numbers for a while, but the rate of marketings here should slow down at some point in time because there are really fewer cattle flowing through the system- they are just spending more time in the feedlots while they are there.”

The heifer on feed numbers in the report signals a significant decrease in replacement females.

“We have had elevated heifers on feed and of course, heifer slaughter has been high,” Peel said. “First half of the year, heifer slaughter is up about 3.8 percent, and so, for the heifers to be up at one point is fine. We slaughter them, it should come down.”

In the July quarterly breakdown, Peel said heifers are still up 3 percent on a year-over-year basis and the steers on feed are down 1.1 percent.

“I don’t really know where we are getting all of these heifers from but apparently, we still have some more in the feedlot, although it clearly probably does indicate heifers that might have been held for replacements are not being diverted into the feedlots,” Peel said.

Peel said we are liquidating females at a pretty rapid rate with cow and heifer slaughter at the pace we have seen this year. The fact that there are a lot of heifers in the feedlots says that we are still continuing to place and slaughter those heifers, so we are pulling down female numbers pretty rapidly, he added.

To see the USDA July Cattle On Feed Report, click here.

Click the LISTEN BAR below to hear more from Ron Hays and Derrell Peel on the latest cattle on feed report.

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.



Ron Hays and Derrell Peel talk July Cattle on Feed Report
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