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Agricultural News

Clues About Tighter Cattle Supplies May Come from Friday USDA Cattle Reports

Wed, 21 Jul 2021 10:20:26 CDT

Clues About Tighter Cattle Supplies May Come from Friday USDA Cattle Reports

The Cattle Industry is looking to the US Department of Agriculture for signals about market impact when the agency releases a pair of reports this coming Friday afternoon at 2 PM Central time. One is the regular monthly Cattle on Feed Report, which analysts expect to show smaller placements in June versus a year ago (94%), higher marketings (102.2%) and a slightly smaller on July first one feed number of 99% of a year ago. Rich Nelson with Allendale agrees with that placement number- his exact guess is 4.3% below a year ago and tweets "This impacts December to Mar fed cattle offerings. It is likely July and Augusr ahead will also run below prior year. Tightening supply, year over year."

Meanwhile, USDA will also issue the mid year Cattle Inventory Report at 2 PM on Friday- and our guest on our latest Beef Buzz, Katelyn McCullock of the Livestock Market Information Center sees the key part of that report being the beef cow numbers as she looks for how much a reduction we have had in the first half of the year from drought induced liquidation. McCullock says "a lot of the western US is struggling and doing a good bit of liquidation in parts of that area" adding that "if the pasture is not able to sustain those breeding herds- then a lot of times, you are going to force them into slaughter channels."

She says that cost of feed and/or the lack of available feed is a key reason many cattlemen are having to partially or even totally sell off their herds. She calls it a dire situation.

She expects the USDA data to show a one to one and half percent reduction in beef cow numbers compared to July of 2020. While she anticipates that dairy cow numbers will be slightly higher- the total cattle count as of July first will likely be about a half percent under the July 2020 figure.

For reference- click here for the January 2021 Cattle Inventory report and click here for the July 2020 Cattle Inventory report.

McCullock said while it's hard on those who are having to cull deeply because of the drought- those who are not in drought areas and can hold onto their beef cows and produce a calf crop may see better returns over the next couple of years because of tighter supplies of animals that can be turned into beef. Producers in the southern plains have not been hurt by drought to this point in 2021- and if that continues to be the case- cattlemen and cattlewomen in Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Texas may benefit from the reduced beef cow population.

Click on the LISTEN BAR below to hear comments from Ag Broadcaster Megan Overby.

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 Beef Buzzes withy katelyn McCullock of the LMIC
right-click to download mp3


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