At the time of writing it is baking hot, there is very little rain and a shortage of grass everywhere. Dairy cows, in a lot of cases, are being fed winter rations of silage. Young cattle are doing surprisingly well on what looks like no grass but seem to be finding something somewhere. In some cases big beef cattle are needing to be fed outside.
The finished price is easing back due to a slight over supply of cattle to abattoirs. I have got a lot of organic store cattle booked in for sale in the next 2 months and producers are ringing me for advice on what to do next. On giving advice I can only work on the scenario that is likely to occur and encourage the planning of your business around what is most “likely” to happen rather than what is most “unlikely” to happen. There are one or two factors that we should consider:
It will start raining (the timing is the issue)
If we get rain at the end of August into September we can expect some massive crops of grass. The ground is warm and the soil will be full of nutrients.
The grain harvest worldwide is not record breaking but it is ok. Some commentators are predicting sky high grain prices but others are predicting only slightly higher prices than last year.
Stocks of forage are bound to be down on last years levels. The extent of this will depend on grass in September and October, mentioned earlier, and maize yields, most crops so far look reasonable.
UK straw crops look to be good and baled in fantastic conditions. The shorter length of the straw is bound to have depressed yield slightly but this should be compensated by the good baling conditions and minimum wastage.
It would be a fair prediction that store prices will be lower than last year but this is hard to predict.
Finished prices will depend whether supply is in step with demand but as things stand this is very hard to predict. I understand a major processor is looking for more supplies in the next 12 months.
Milk prices are likely to rise.
I’m always available for advice on marketing your beef store cattle and David Bostock is keen to talk about dairy stock (for which we continue to have strong demand).
Peter mob: 07720 892922 / Office: 01829 730580
David mob: 07734 808050 / Office: 01829 730580
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