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Stackyard News Jul 06

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Keep Back Beef Cattle for Cooler Times

Feeders should hold non-contract prime cattle and finished cows back from the market until the heat wave ends and the pile up of unsold beef that is clogging the distribution system has cleared.
NBA chairman, Duff Burrell

NBA chairman, Duff Burrell

So says the National Beef Association which like others in the industry is astonished at the impact persistently hot weather has had on beef consumption and is anxious that finishers themselves do as much as they can to restore market equilibrium as quickly as it is possible to do so.

“Beef eating across Europe hit the crash barriers as soon as the temperatures reached the high 20's and there is no point in flinging more cattle at the system if it is already choked as a result of massive suspension in consumer interest after many days of sweltering in the 30's,” said NBA chairman, Duff Burrell.

“The price plunge which began two weeks ago, and has seen £40-£48 stripped off the value of some cattle in all parts of the UK , is a short term phenomenon which will be cured as soon as temperatures cool down and the nation no longer has to mop its forehead.”

“Finishers can help by holding many of the cattle they would otherwise sell off the market until a steady price rise signals that the back log is cleared and the way is once again open to regular trading.”

And the Association want to kill off unnecessary pessimism about this summer's price crash which some farmers fear heralds a repeat of last year's plunge which persisted right through to October when national averages fell below 160p deadweight or 85p live.

“The factors which undermined the market in 2005 were mainly supply led cannot be repeated,” said Mr Burrell.

“Last year there was a collision with heavy additional imports competing with higher than expected numbers of domestic cattle and the result was a temporary beef mountain which had to be chewed through before balance could be restored.”

“This year is different because both domestic cattle supplies and imports are lighter which means that as long as new demand problems are not created by a prolonged heat wave there is every chance of normal trading, at previous price levels, being quickly restored.”

“If the current heat wave turns into a prolonged drought both farmers and meat traders will have fresh problems to face but our current advice is not to throw cattle at the market while temperatures remain uncomfortably high but to offer them in numbers again as soon as prices have recovered.”

“However it would be wise to continue to sell all cattle, particularly cows, which are in danger of becoming either overweight or too fat and could face discounts of up £60-£100 a head at some abattoirs and some markets if they are not sold quickly,” Mr Burrell added.

link Heat Makes Cattle Prices Take A Dip
link Finishers must hold firm for beef market prices
link Breeders Celebrate 40th Anniversary Of The Border Aberdeen-Angus Club

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