Beef Market Update: The holiday lull, cattle placement surprises, and questions about demand, Nov 24, 2023

(Kara Oosterhuis/RealAgriculture)

As expected, cattle markets were a little quieter this week in light of U.S. Thanksgiving on Thursday.

Still, there was plenty of trade, cattle-on-feed data, and export numbers released so that Shaun Haney and Anne Wasko of the Gateway Livestock Exchange have no shortage of news to discuss this week in the Beef Market Update.

Starting in the U.S., Wasko covers live trade prices, beef movement and cattle placements, and covers some key demand questions of the overall market.

North of the border, carcass weights averaged 966 pounds nationally, about the same as last year this same week, but still 20 pounds above the five-year average, Wasko says.

Canadian exports are down year over year, with more beef moving to the U.S. and a lot less moving to Japan, but our production is lower, so this isn’t a surprise. This could be a continuing trend, too.

Hear the entire Beef Market Update below, or download the podcast for later!


  • Cash cattle prices were steady to lower ahead of U.S. holiday, with Texas and Kansas trading at $177
  • Beef movement struggles in November, with placements up 4% despite expectations of a smaller increase
  • Beef demand and supply in the U.S., with focus on retail and food service sales
  • Beef demand forecasts for 2024 and 2025 are lower than pre-COVID levels, with retail and food service sales slowing down
  • An update on cattle placements, carcass weights, and packer activity in Canada
  • Wasko highlights seasonal fluctuations in carcass weights, with a focus on Canadian data
  • Canada’s beef exports are down 5% year-to-date, with a 35% decline in exports to Japan and a 2% increase in exports to the U.S.
  • Canada is importing hamburger-type products, such as those from Uruguay, New Zealand, and Australia, due to a shortage in domestic supply.

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