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Agricultural News

USDA's April Cattle on Feed Report Looks Neutral to Friendly - Derrell Peel Explains

Fri, 22 Apr 2016 19:37:10 CDT

USDA's April Cattle on Feed Report Looks Neutral to Friendly - Derrell Peel Explains Beef herd expansion that began back in 2014 means producers will continue to see more feeder cattle in the market, says Derrell Peel, Oklahoma State University extension livestock marketing specialist. This is confirmed in the latest USDA Cattle on Feed report released April 22, that indicates U.S. cattle on feed inventory is up 1 percent from this time last year.

Peel says there weren’t any real surprises in the report, and the fact that numbers are up year-over-year is something producers should expect for several months to come.

“Herd expansion has now reached a point where that feeder supply pipeline is coming into the feedlots,” he says. “We’re going to translate this into increased slaughter coming out of the feedlot and increased beef production from this point forward.”

According to the report, cattle and calves on feed for the U.S. slaughter market for feedlots with capacity of 1,000 or more head totaled 10.9 million head on April 1, 2016. The inventory was 1 percent above April 1, 2015.

The inventory included 7.36 million steers and steer calves, down 1 percent from the previous year. This group accounted for 68 percent of the total inventory. Heifers and heifer calves accounted for 3.49 million head, up 4 percent from 2015.

Peel says the increase in heifers on feed is something to note.

“The heifers on feed as of April 1, were up year-over-year for the first time in 14 quarters,” he says. “That’s indicative of the fact that feeder supplies are beginning to grow and probably also confirms that we’re slowing down the rate of heifer retention.”

Placements in feedlots during March totaled 1.89 million head, 5 percent above 2015. Net placements were 1.83 million head. During March, placements of cattle and calves weighing less than 600 pounds were 352,000 head, 600-699 pounds were 275,000 head, 700-799 pounds were 495,000 head and 800 pounds and greater were 770,000 head.

Marketings of fed cattle during March totaled 1.75 million head, 7 percent above 2015.

Read the full report.

Click on the LISTEN BAR below to hear Dr. Derrell Peel’s full commentary on the latest USDA Cattle on Feed Report.



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