Beef Market Update: What is the blistering heat doing to the cattle markets?

(Debra Murphy/RealAgriculture)

It is hot hot hot in many parts of North America right now. We are likely aware of how the heat is impacting us, but the question today for Anne Wasko of the Gateway Livestock Exchange is how is this impacting the cattle markets?

In this episode of the Beef Market Update, Wasko explains that as of now, there really haven’t been any significant impacts to the flow of cattle. This is in part due to the amount of technology a lot of yards use in order to keep the cattle as cool and comfortable as possible.

In terms of nutrition, Wasko says the rate of gain is often slower, but on the other side of the coin — when it’s so hot, we humans likely don’t eat as much, either. (Hello, winter weight.)

Check out the full Beef Market Update below, for conversation on report expectations, cattle placements, grass conditions, and more. Or, read below for a short summary:


  • We’re approaching the last week of July. The markets are pretty quiet. Pretty typical for summer
  • The choice cutout lost $4 this week, not a big surprise. This is on trend
  • In Western Canada, the market was lower, not a pile of trade. Cattle feeders are feeling pretty current
  • Weights are down from a year ago
  • We often find in these really hot spells that you get consumption backing off
  • USDA Cattle on Feed report coming out today, as well as mid-year inventory report
  • Last week CanFax released the Alberta and Saskatchewan cattle on feed numbers of rJuly 1st — they were down 8 per cent, staying on trend
  • Cattle are being pulled off grass early due to drought, and that is continuing here in July as we watch these markets
  • Expecting a calf run later this summer
  • More producers are using internet sales, there’s more cattle being placed on them
  • Any of the graphs that was hanging on is likely going to struggle if next week is as hot as we anticipate

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