Worsening pasture conditions push more cattle into feedlots | TSLN.com

Worsening pasture conditions push more cattle into feedlots

Livestock analysts are pointing out that U.S. pasture conditions continue to decline, forcing more cattle into feedlots, including some spring calves.

USDA reported 29 percent of U.S. pastures in poor or very poor condition in the week ended July 10, compared to 27 percent the previous week and 11 percent a year ago.

Conditions are much worse in western states, where USDA rated as poor or very poor the pastures across 91 percent of New Mexico, 86 percent of Texas, 69 percent of Oklahoma and 63 percent of Arizona.

“It now appears that the drought and high fertilizer prices have reduced available grass pastures enough to push more cattle – even some spring calves – into yards,” livestock analysts wrote in the CME Group’s Daily Livestock Report, noting this could mean higher fed cattle numbers through the end of this year.

It could also lead to a dramatic drop in available cattle down the road. The analysts warned that unless USDA badly miscounted the past two years’ calf crops, the number of available calves must fall, “setting up a potentially-explosive situation for calf prices, and, eventually, feeder cattle, fed cattle and beef.”

Livestock analysts are pointing out that U.S. pasture conditions continue to decline, forcing more cattle into feedlots, including some spring calves.

Recommended Stories For You

USDA reported 29 percent of U.S. pastures in poor or very poor condition in the week ended July 10, compared to 27 percent the previous week and 11 percent a year ago.

Conditions are much worse in western states, where USDA rated as poor or very poor the pastures across 91 percent of New Mexico, 86 percent of Texas, 69 percent of Oklahoma and 63 percent of Arizona.

“It now appears that the drought and high fertilizer prices have reduced available grass pastures enough to push more cattle – even some spring calves – into yards,” livestock analysts wrote in the CME Group’s Daily Livestock Report, noting this could mean higher fed cattle numbers through the end of this year.

It could also lead to a dramatic drop in available cattle down the road. The analysts warned that unless USDA badly miscounted the past two years’ calf crops, the number of available calves must fall, “setting up a potentially-explosive situation for calf prices, and, eventually, feeder cattle, fed cattle and beef.”

Go back to article