Beef prices low on last year

WHILE beef prices are not what they were this time last year, local agents hope a wet autumn will change the dynamic in the oversupplied market.
Leongatha Landmark’s Terry Ginnane said many factors pointed to why beef prices are low.
“Beef has less demand on the world market right now. In New South Wales it has been very dry so there are a lot more cattle on the market than we have seen,” he said.
“One of our major abattoirs in Murray Bridge, South Australia also recently burnt down, so the killing capacity has been reduced. There are many more factors though.”
Store market prices have eased through the month with steers making $2.90 to $3.30 per kg.
Heifers are currently selling at $2.60 to $2.70 per kg while the best vealers are making at most $3 per kg.
Phelan and Henderson and Co’s Simon Henderson agreed dry conditions in NSW had had an impact.
“It has been dry up there and if we could receive some monsoonal weather it could turn a lot of sellers into buyers,” he said.
“The market is being oversupplied by more cow beef than our suppliers can handle, hence the drop in price.”
Mr Henderson said while beef prices have dropped an average of 10 percent, the annual influx of bullocks has already started at Leongatha’s Victorian Livestock Exchange.
“We have gone from having about 400 bullocks yarded to about 800,” he said.
“We had a very kind December which prolonged the spring grass, so farmers have the opportunity to hold their cattle a little longer before moving them on and replacing them with suitable restocks.”
Mr Ginnane said while the extra grass was welcome, farmers had to ensure cattle did not gain excess weight.
“The higher supply of cattle currently on offer has cut back the potential for price increases and it does not look like we will see the same high levels we have had over the past two years. There has been a big correction on the market,” he said.
Mr Henderson said prices did not live up to January 2017’s record figures, and the discrepancy between store and fat prices was making it difficult to trade.
“Store prices are currently high while fat prices are low so it is tricky. The most successful breeds constantly making $3 per kg are the prime European crosses and British bred or crossed prime bullocks,” he said.
“Friesians and Friesian cross bullocks are currently quite cheap, as is the cow market at the moment.”
Export orders have brought in some money to local farms, with offers on steers and heifers reaching up to $3.40. Unjoined Angus are faring the best with 250kg heifers going for around $1100.

Successful sales: from left, Brian Cantwell and Phelan and Henderson and Co’s Simon Henderson at the Victorian Livestock Exchange’s 29th annual F1 Heifer Sale on February 5.

Short URL: http://thestar.com.au/?p=24052

Posted by on Feb 13 2018. Filed under Rural News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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