U.S. beef exports opened the new year on a positive note, but market conditions suggest that 2014 could be a challenging year, according to statistics released by the USDA and compiled by USMEF, a contractor to the Beef Checkoff Program.
Feeder cattle found aggressive bidders the first full week of trading in 2017.
Record-high cash fed cattle prices helped boost cattle feeding margins over $280 per head last week.
Meaningful change isn’t accomplished overnight. More often, it happens slowly by chipping away piece by piece until something new suddenly takes shape.
Global macroeconomic factors weigh heavily on cattle feeders’ bullishness, while the short cattle supply is not forgotten by bears.
Just 8% of U.S. pastures are in poor to very poor condition, according to USDA. It is a 2% improvement from last year.
Farmers and ranchers in the Southern Great Plains are in a drought with conditions worsening since November.
There are more steers in feedlots this April, but fewer heifers. It could be a sign of herd expansion.