Cattle Market Report:
Nothing aggressive or noteworthy has transpired in the cattle markets the last week or two. There has been fluctuations day to day, but in general things have remained steady. Packers buying, but it seems that their concern at filling orders has lessened, and they are not bidding quite as aggressively. Labor Day weekend is past now and demand will slow. Inventories suggest that there will still be sufficient cattle coming to market in the near term to maintain prices rather than push them upward. I have had a few conversations recently about the large spread between steers and heifers this year. To me, that indicates that plenty of steers are at market to provide what packers need, and breeding purchases are down. This is obvious as mature cows continue to come to market.
Grain Market Report:
Of note right now in the grain markets is the ongoing harvest. While yields may not be estimated to be as high as many would like, the ability of producers to store rather than take current prices allows some ability for producers to buy time and possibly have some affect on the market. The World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates from the USDA will be released next Monday and may influence the markets. The Russia/Ukraine conflict is still part of the discussion with recent concerns that Ukraine may not be allowed to export as fall comes on.
Sheep Market Report:
Sheep markets were steady this week. The USDA estimated domestic lamb and mutton meat production for the week ending September 3rd totaled 2.14 million pounds on a 32,000 head slaughter this week, unchanged from the previous week. Imported lamb and mutton meat totaled approximately 5.64 million pounds. This was 264 percent of domestic production for the same week.
Hay Market Report:
While the heat in the West has not been ideal, it did seem to make way for the Desert Southwest to bale some hay with the monsoons dissipating. The demand for cow hay is down quite a bit as many ranchers received some timely rain that bolstered pastures. Unfortunately, it is also a product of deep culling as well. Farm Bureau surveys suggest around a 30% culling for many. Higher testing alfalfa has stayed steady in value even with the more recent drop in price on the lower quality hay. It is looking like there may be hay sitting in the stack for many.