Summer Heat Weighs on Beef Demand in the Face Of Record Retail Prices

Markets picked up in Alberta this week with 112-113 being reported which is a couple dollars higher than last week making Canada more even with the US jump last week. The US feels like its low were  in a couple weeks ago which may mean the worst of the summer cash prices is over. We are in the process of starting the grind higher but it will not be a fast recovery.  The GRIND higher is probably a good description of what this market recovery could look like.  Do not expect a quick rise higher in the short term.

It is still August which is not the best beef demand period. The very intense US summer heat is hurting demand right now in combination with record retail prices.

In the US there has been a slight increase in beef cow slaughter but not even close to last year. US trade is forecasting that beef cow slaughter will be down in the US 4.5% from last year.

In Canada, the yearling run is about to start. It will be very interesting see with the feedyard losses this summer how yearling and calf prices will be impacted as the fall progresses. The direction of feed grains is the major focus right now for the feedyards around the country. The fear of skyrocketing feed prices is reducing the demand for feeder cattle resulting in lower prices in comparison to the hot spring market.

The reality is no matter if you are a rancher or a feedyard you need to keep your head on a swivel this fall and make sure that you take care of your risk management with so much volatility and unknowns.

 

Anne Dunford

President of Cattle Trends Inc., which consults for companies and individuals in the cattle business. Also a regular contributor on RealAgriculture.com

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