Beef Market Update: Ripples of uncertainty, placement number swings, and pork winning the Easter weekend

(Paige Holmquist/RealAgriculture)

Cattle markets reacted negatively to the news earlier this week of dairy cows testing positive for HPAI in Texas and Kansas.

As Anne Wasko of the Gateway Livestock Exchange explains, it’s unfortunate but not unexpected to see a downward dip in futures when uncertainty creeps in to the marketplace.

Cash trade in the U.S. was light this week, and also moved lower but that was after setting an all-time high last week, she says. There was a Cattle on Feed report last Friday that showed February placements jumped 10 per cent for the month. That’s a big jump, however, when taking on an average with January, overall placements were only up 1 per cent in two months. That trend was reflected in Canadian on-feed numbers, as well.

In a short week heading in to a holiday weekend, the second piece of the price puzzle is demand. There’s no questioning that pork is the retail winner for this Easter weekend, Wasko says.

What’s the outlook for backgrounding calves and the year ahead for cow-calf producers? Tap below to listen now or download the podcast audio for later!

Wake up with RealAgriculture

Subscribe to our daily newsletters to keep you up-to-date with our latest coverage every morning.

Wake up with RealAgriculture