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High cattle prices here to stay?

Discussion in 'Agricultural Operations' started by JBGASH, Jan 18, 2015.

  1. lantraxco

    lantraxco Senior Member

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    Scrub,

    Grain fed is how they fatten them up for the sale, pack them full of corn to add weight, as of course they sell by the pound. It adds fat, which makes for a moister more flavorful cut of meat usually. If they would just switch them back to hay for a couple weeks before slaughter we'd have a lot less E-coli problems, but no, the industry would rather treat the hamburger with liquid and gaseous ammonia to kill it, and I think some of the steaks get gamma radiation from Cobalt-60 or the like. Fun stuff this science..... :beatsme
     
  2. Scrub Puller

    Scrub Puller Senior Member

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    Yair . . . thanks lantraxco.

    Same thing happens here with feedlots but on a smaller scale than in the US . . . I was just surprised by Multiracer's comment that grass fed was the more expensive meat.

    Cheers.
     
  3. Birken Vogt

    Birken Vogt Charter Member

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    This thread is full of great comments like most of this site, from people who understand how their markets work.

    I would like to add my agreement to the above from the consumer standpoint. Beef is now a luxury for me. When my wife and I laid out budgets in the beginning of our marriage we decided the price point for meats would be $1/lb for bone-in meats such as roasts and whole chickens and $2/lb for cuts that were low in waste such as tri tip and boneless chicken breasts, etc. These were reasonable price points at the time and I expect they might be again some day but all the prices are interrelated to some degree and with beef and pork being high that lifts chicken to some degree, though it is usually the most affordable.

    Now the years have gone by and we eat beans a lot more often than we used to.
     
  4. Multiracer

    Multiracer Senior Member

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    Scrub,
    Around here anything with a label that states, Grass fed, free range, organic or anything out of the ordinary package is a bump in price. Same goes for the chicken products.
     
  5. Scrub Puller

    Scrub Puller Senior Member

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    Yair . . . Gotcha Multiracer . . . the difference in our countries used to be that here "grass fed" was the normal and "grain fed" was the expensive cut.

    I must say though that it is not so much these days and folks have embraced the grain fed concept.

    Cheers.
     
  6. CM1995

    CM1995 Administrator

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    Not directly related to beef prices but related none the less. A good friend of mine has a small herd and is getting more into the cattle business. We were talking last night about his recent bull he bought.

    I didn't know this even existed, his bull came with a genetics report that estimated the fat content of the rib eyes and other choice cuts the bulls genes would produce. I find it fascinating the science that goes into breeding and the genetics of modern beef producers. I'm looking for pasture land, not to get rich on cows but learn the process raising them - (I'm in construction that's enough risk :rolleyes:)..lol:D
     
  7. roddyo

    roddyo Senior Member

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    We have been doing embryo transfer where you flush a really good cow and bull then put those embryos in a different cheaper cow. We got 13 embryos out of a flush the other day.
     
  8. Queenslander

    Queenslander Senior Member

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    We call them estimated breeding values (ebv), where bulls are given a score for particular traits which you can use to select a sire to improve these traits in your herd.
    Still need to give them the old eyeball assessment though.
    The beef industry is no different from many others these days, using technology to find gains in efficiency and quality.
    I imagine prices of grazing land there have risen along with cattle prices.
    Cheers, Greg
     
  9. JBGASH

    JBGASH Senior Member

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    Queenslander, here in the US we call them EPD's or "Expected progeny differences".
    Lantraxco, On the GMO grains, in the Midwest most of all the corn & soybean production is now GMO, in addition, if there are any non GMO grains produced and delivered at the local elevators, they do not separate it from GMO, so it is mixed together basically. Roddyo, On that fat sucking 500# calf at $1250-1500.00 thought, it was sure nice to get that nice check, unfortunately it is not a get rich quick thing, a lot of cost as you well know went in to producing that calf. Also for the many years we cattle producers were selling our product below our cost of production to help "insure a cheap and bountiful food supply" nobody ever said a word or offered in help.
     
  10. Multiracer

    Multiracer Senior Member

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    JBGASH,
    No government subsidies to help a cattle farmer out during those times you speak of ?
     
  11. JBGASH

    JBGASH Senior Member

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    Multiracer, no subsidies that I am aware of for the cattle industry, other than the USDA drought assistance programs that have been around for years when the feed sources are threatened or get in short supply. I have heard that the 2014 farm bill may have some provisions in it for the livestock producers but have not checked into it yet.
     
  12. roddyo

    roddyo Senior Member

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    I never said selling calves for big money is a bad thing:) Cow/Calf producers very seldom get to sit in the drivers seat and By God are they driving now;) What I am saying is good times break more people than bad times. When this thing corrects a lot of optimists are going to find their *** in the wringer. It's awful hard in this market to buy something to make money and limit your exposure when it goes away. Who would have thought good bred broke mouth cows at a dollar a pound would be the deal of the day?
     
  13. Queenslander

    Queenslander Senior Member

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    OK, So what do you fellas call a broke mouth cow - cast for age perhaps?
    Cheers, Greg
     
  14. roddyo

    roddyo Senior Member

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    Around here cows at the auction are aged to 7 then called SS for short and solid or O for old. An old cow could be a SS missing a tooth or not have a tooth in her head. That's a judgement call you have to make based on her condition. When you get them home you get to grade your homework;) Brokemouth is slang for an old cow. We have been turning a few out to finish the loads.

    It's hard buying a load of thin stock cows to turn out and graze. The trucking is the same if the truck is full or half full so.....If this thing holds together it should be a good money maker. With this market weighing them up every year looks better than locking yourself in a multiyear deal like replacement heifers. JMO
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2015
  15. Queenslander

    Queenslander Senior Member

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    Yeah, we might be in the same industry but when it comes to terminology we may as well be from different planets!
    I guess we would call them store cows.
    We don't sell store cows but plenty here do.
    We put our old and cull cows aside, away from a bull, until they are fat then sell them direct to meatworks. (packers?)
    Most cow meat here goes to the US to be made into hamburgers and the like.
    So if you pay $1/lb for your thin stock cows, what sort of price would you expect when you turn them off?
    Cheers, Greg
     
  16. JBGASH

    JBGASH Senior Member

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    Queenslander, Packers is the term we use that would be the same as your term meatworks. Slaughter / cull cows are bringing around a $1.00 per pound at present. Cattle that have been fed out in a feedlot to appox 1250-1400 pounds are bringing around $1.60 / pound
     
  17. guest

    guest Well-Known Member

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    Here in my part of Texas we had several years of drought 2011 being the worst. I had to sell 40% of my herd,cow calf business is not something you get in and out of. It has cycles up and down you gotta stick with it. That said I sold some steers last week they avg. 500# @ $2.65 but prices are falling. Kept enough heifers to increase heard by 33%, but it will be 2 years before they show any income. We eat grass fed beef as well, eat the best sell the rest my philosophy.
     
  18. Queenslander

    Queenslander Senior Member

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    I know it's pointless comparing prices, but still interesting none the less.
    We grow our steers out to about 450kg-1000lb, feedlot entry weight, here, for steers bound for Japanese or E.U. Markets.
    These cattle, Santas, are making around $2.70/kg at the moment, but rising weekly.
    Fat cows to the works, around $2.20/kg, about $1/lb.
    Hope to sell some in a couple of weeks if I can get them out.
    After two years drought, it's now too wet.:)
    Cheers, Greg
     
  19. JBGASH

    JBGASH Senior Member

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    guest, I was wandering just how many other Texas producers had to sell off their cow herds like yourself due to those droughts? Was it a statewide thing or certain areas/pockets of the state? This has a huge impact on the numbers of cattle in the future due to Texas being the largest cow/calf producing state in the nation with Missouri coming in 2nd in the rank. Was wandering what good grass hay is costing in Texas too?
     
  20. guest

    guest Well-Known Member

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    Everyone in my area culled cows probably 20% sold out completely ,round bales of good hay was selling over $100. I kept mine alive with $75 milo stubble and cubes. The whole state was affected south Texas was worse, a lot of people no only had no grass, but had to haul water to stock that gets old quick. Good hay this year is about $65 for a 6x5 bale. I have about $50 a bale in fertilizer, weed poison, land taxes on hay field and baling. Good hay is not cheap I cut mine on 28 day cycle for maximum protein and digestibility got 3 years worth 2 in barns 1 outside that I am feeding now.