Current. Relevant. Quality-driven.
For nearly 10 years, Paul Dykstra has written a bi-weekly market column for the brand, these past six years as the CAB Insider. He shares current market updates, trends and observations with a closer look at the cattle market from the beef-product side than you can find anywhere else. Yes, there’s an emphasis on the Certified Angus Beef ® brand, and you will find the latest research exploring carcass quality. We want you to be the first to know all of this important industry information, to help bring even more value to your herd.
The man on the inside
A native of Colorado, he grew up on a commercial cow calf ranch in western Colorado and later earned a degree in animal science from Colorado State University. Paul worked as a feedyard manager for the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center in Clay Center, Neb., before joining the brand’s supply development team in 2002.
As the Assistant Director of Supply Management and Analysis for the brand, Paul combines his experience and knowledge to work closely with ranchers and feedyard managers to raise Angus cattle using the best management practices to enhance profitability by producing quality beef.
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From a feedyard’s perspective, the fourth-quarter quality spreads are an important seasonal factor. Many feeders with high-quality Angus genetics in their inventory procure cattle with the expectation that carcass quality premiums will be near their annual highs during this period.
Producers merchandizing their spring calf crop the second week of October were likely relatively pleased with the outcome, while those marketing in the subsequent week were handed a difficult dose of reality. Volatility is alive and well. The fact that premiums exist and opportunities to charge more for higher quality are the drivers of the system.
Supplies of market-ready cattle are simply not as burdensome as they were just weeks ago. As a matter of fact, feedyard showlists from north to south across the major feeding states are smaller this week than a year ago.
Market Update Last week’s trade featured what cattle feeders hope is a trend reversal, with a $1 to $2/cwt. increase across major feeding regions. The Cattle on Feed Report published last Friday revealed a second consecutive record-high beginning inventory for August...
The brand recently announced two additional carcass spec modifications to further enhance opportunities for stakeholders. As we ease toward October, feedyard managers will remain hopeful for increasing values in both cash cattle and deferred live cattle futures contracts.
Seven weeks of slight improvements in fed cattle pricing came to a halt as packers paid $1 to $2/cwt. less for fed cattle last week. The USDA Cattle on Feed Report, published the Friday before, had some influence, with the August 1 on-feed number posting a record high for the date.