Strong demand is fueling higher beef cattle prices this spring, that according to livestock market economist Dr. Derrell Peel. Peel said demand for all the meats is strong right now, especially for beef.
“If you look across all the meats, beef, pork and poultry prices are all at the wholesale level running very strong. So, think demand, in general, is going strong. Obviously, we got another round of stimulus payments, that’s helping, no doubt. Demand side is definitely helping to pull these cattle markets ahead a little bit.”
From a beef standpoint, Peel said as Americans move into grilling season, retail grocery demand will move higher.
“We’re really setting up the seasonal demand that’s associated with grilling season. A lot of that wholesale buying is going to take place in April and early May, getting ready for Memorial Day weekend. So, a combination of both the retail grocery demand, as well as continued progress on the food service side, is really helping to support wholesale meat markets.”
However, high feed costs continue to cast a cloud over the cattle market. Peel added there is a race between higher feed costs and better beef demand. The other he noted, with corn prices advancing fast, and with wheat harvest coming on we may see feedlots switching to feeding more wheat.
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