Beef Market Update: Year-to-date domestic slaughter numbers up 12 per cent

(Kara Oosterhuis/RealAgriculture)

As Anne Wasko, of the Gateway Livestock Exchange puts it, here in Canada “cattle slaughter has been outstanding.”

Following some really good weeks, total Canadian harvests hit 72,400 this week, as Wasko explains in this week’s Beef Market Update.

“Breaking that down into young cattle and cows, the steer and heifer kill is basically 63,000. We’ve only hit that twice this year, and once last year. So that’s a big number for us,” she emphasizes. “Cow slaughter was 9,000, similar to what we would’ve harvested the same week in 2018. All in all, our year-to-date harvests in Canada for all of 2021 is up 12 per cent from last year.”

Wasko also adds packers are making sure that cattle is staying here instead of the U.S., because of our high harvest numbers and some external factors the U.S. packers are currently facing. The good sign is that they are still getting through the volumes.

The other side of this conversation of course is the carcass weights.

“Our steer weight last week was 906 pounds. So that’s below where we were this time last year by two pounds, and below 2019 by nine pounds,” Wasko says. “Cattle are getting moved. We aren’t getting behind. We talked about backlog so much last year that we just aren’t sitting in that same shape. We’re in pretty good shape as we head into the fall.”

Check out the full conversation between Anne Wasko and RealAgriculture’s Lyndsey Smith, here:

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