Things seem to be looking up for the cattle industry – as USDA noted declining feed costs and improving pastures in its latest Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook report – according to Meatingplace. Early this month, average monthly corn prices dropped almost one-third from August’s average monthly price. This decline comes from good corn yields, good supplies and the proposed RFS. Good timing of precipitation also pulled the majority of the winter wheat crop in Texas, Kansas and Oklahoma to the fair to excellent condition. If wheat crop conditions continue improving – or don’t deteriorate, USDA expects feedlots could experience an increase of large wheat-pasture feeder cattle in March – which would be market-ready in August and September.
USDA predicts precipitation now through winter will benefit spring pastures and enhance the outlook for summer grazing in the coming year. But winter weather could positively or negatively affect these gains.