Beef Market Update: A look back at 2018 and forward to 2019


To wrap up the year, RealAg Radio host Shaun Haney and Anne Wasko, of Gateway Livestock Exchange, take a look at the beef markets for the last time in 2018.

It’s still a push to get to live cattle to get to $120/cwt by the end of the year says Wasko, adding that just last week the hit $119/cwt.

“As we go into the Christmas week of course things are going to quiet down,” she says.

Reflecting on the year, the U.S. fed cattle market hit about US$4 lower than 2017 which wasn’t a surprise to Wasko. Looking ahead into next year, the same trend is expected with more cattle and more beef coming out of the U.S. at slightly lower prices.

As most can expect, feeder markets are quiet into the last half of December. Fed and feeder prices in western Canada were steady to a couple dollars higher than this time last year in 2017.

Wasko says more lightweight cattle could be in the mix for next year, because of U.S. imports.

“They simply have been lighter weight cattle that’s been in the mix for the type of cattle we’ve brought in from the U.S. and of course, there’s been lots of calf placements,” Wasko says. “The calf movement early this fall was strong, was active again going back in part to the dry conditions and what was going on at the ranches in western Canada, calfs had to move, feed was in tight supply and pricey, so you did what you did to keep your cow herd around.”

Listen below to the full Beef Market Update with host Shaun Haney and our market expert, Anne Wasko.

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