Challenging Fall Run for Cattle Markets

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Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Agriculture has issued its final Cattle Marketing Update for 2012.

The unexpected closure of XL Foods made for a challenging fall calf run, and provincial Cattle Market Analyst Grant Zalinko says this year, there was a drop in the number of animals moving through the auction markets.

"We're likely working with a smaller breeding herd," he said. "We're probably seeing some lower numbers in terms of non-fed or cull cows coming to market in 2012 compared to 2011."

Zalinko adds as far as prices were concerned, 500 to 600 pound feeder steers averaged out at about $1.50 to $1.55 per hundred weight.

"When everything is said and done, we'll look back and see that those prices were about $3.00 to $4.00 per hundred weight below that same class of cattle during the fall run of 2011, and clearly attributed to significantly higher feed grain and forage prices in 2012," he added.

He says there’s also a possibility that some producers have delayed marketing some of their feeder cattle into the Spring Marketing period.

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