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Beef Buzz News


OSU's Derrell Peel Says Winter Wheat Pasture is Especially Valuable This Year

Tue, 19 Oct 2021 10:55:03 CDT

OSU's Derrell Peel Says Winter Wheat Pasture is Especially Valuable This Year The U.S. cattle market has not fallen a great deal so far into the fall months of 2021, as prices sometimes can. At the same time, they have not moved in the other direction, which has some producers frustrated. Derrell Peel, Extension Livestock Marketing Specialist at Oklahoma State University, told Ron Hays, director of Radio Oklahoma Ag Network, that he is surprised cattle prices have not gained as quickly.

“I think we are making progress - I have been thinking that for a month,” Peel said. “I believe it is happening, but it always seems to take longer than you think.”

The slow pace of improvement comes down to the cap on the industry in terms of packing capacity, according to Peel. The packing side of the industry continues to struggle to find labor, failing to meet consistent output and slaughter numbers.

“The pace of cattle coming out of the feedlots is coming down,” Peel said. “We just have not dropped below that capacity constraint.”

Meanwhile, the feeder market has seen strength in recent days. At the same time, producers are waiting on winter wheat pasture to emerge. According to the latest Crop Progress report, Oklahoma’s 2022 winter wheat crop is 57% planted and 37% emerged.

“We are late with getting some wheat going, but it is coming on,” Peel said. “September was very dry … a rain in October in Oklahoma almost guarantees you will put a little money back in the market.”

In the last week, Peel said the bump in the feeder market is because of winter wheat planting. He said Oklahoma picks up a running, counter-seasonal, helping producers hold prices a little higher than normal for this time of year thanks to winter wheat pasture.

According to Peel’s analysis, feeder cattle budgets are looking promising.

“My budgets suggest that there are average returns,” Peel said. “I think the budgets will pay for wheat pasture - the value of that wheat pasture is higher this year as a result of the higher cost of gain in feedlots.”

In all, he said he predicts the average Oklahoma producers could see some positive return on feeder cattle this season.

The factors that will come into play, according to Peel, are the size of feeder cattle, how long producers intend to hold them, how much total weight a producer intends to put on them. He said programs vary a lot and producers should always do their homework before getting the checkbook.

Click on the LISTEN BAR below to hear more from Ron Hays and Dr. Derrell Peel as they talk about winter wheat pasture and Oklahoma cattle operations this season, including the high cost of feed this year.

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.

   


   

Listen to Ron's conversation with Dr. Peel here.
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