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.
Cattle prices are up significantly from last year, while beef prices slide from last week.
Fed cattle prices are higher for the second week in a row.
Native bluestem pasture in Kansas has fallen in price the last two years for many producers renting grass, but the rates are still significantly higher than six years ago.
This month's cattle on feed report noted 2.6% more cattle in 1,000 head capacity feedlots than last August 1.
Meaningful change isn’t accomplished overnight. More often, it happens slowly by chipping away piece by piece until something new suddenly takes shape.
Already facing steep losses, cattle feeders saw their margins decline further in a dismal pre-Labor Day market.