Economist says strong cattle supplies will continue
A livestock economist says both cattle placements and on feed numbers were at the upper end of pre-report estimates in the USDA’s latest Cattle on Feed report. University of Missouri’s Scott Brown says it’s a good reminder that there are a lot of cattle supplies coming as we head into the first quarter of 2021.
He tells Brownfield with more cattle expected to come online, the industry is keeping a close eye on slaughter capacity in the beef industry. Something, he says, hasn’t typically been an issue for the beef sector. “If you look at the last few years, we’ve already been seeing a situation where shackle space is certainly much less plentiful than it was a decade ago,” he says. “When you look at 2021, one could certainly raise that red flag just a little bit higher given what I think is going to happen coming out of the gate.”
While there have been significant investments to increase shackle space on the pork side, beef processors haven’t made that same investment because historically shackle space in the beef industry hasn’t been pressured.