Imports of feeder cattle: Mexican up, Canadian down
- Through the first half of 2020, Mexican feeder cattle imports have increased 3 percent compared to 2019.
- Canadian feeder cattle imports have decreased 50 percent through the first half of this year compared to 2019.
- Mexican imports have been greatly impacted by drought as 32 percent of Mexico is dealing with severe drought conditions.
- Imported feeder steer volumes are up 3.9 percent, while heifer imports are about even with year ago levels.
Slaughter cow prices bright spot for cattle industry
- Covid-19 has brought uncertainty and trying times to all segments of the cattle industry, however the dynamics for the slaughter cow market have been a little different from the live cattle markets, according to Josh Maples, agricultural economist at Mississippi State University.
- Slaughter cow prices have actually been one of the few bright spots through the pandemic.
- Over the past six weeks, slaughter cow prices in the southern plains averaged $57.84/cwt, an increase of 19.5 percent compared to the same period in 2019.
- Cull cow markets are directly related to ground beef demand and since the onset of Covid-19, retail sales of ground beef have increased significantly.
- Beef cow slaughter year to date is up 2 percent, while dairy cow slaughter is down 2 percent.
- Maples said that lower calf prices this fall could lead to increased beef cow culling. Rebounding milk prices will most likely prevent significant dairy cow culling through the remaining months of 2020.
- “While the supply picture is becoming a little clearer, ground beef demand will continue to be key for support of beef cow cull prices,” said Maples.
Boxed beef prices
- Choice boxed beef: $205.30 (-0.16)
- Select boxed beef: $196.84 (-0.13)