Cattle prices lower than last year
FOR the first time in three years, Australian cattle prices are now lower than year-ago levels, and production is higher, resulting in downward pressure on the market that is expected to continue throughout 2017.
This is one of a number of revisions to 2017 projections included in Meat & Livestock Australia’s (MLA) mid-year cattle industry update, made as a result of factors including a poor July-September rainfall outlook for southern Australia following the dry autumn, 20-year low female slaughter and a volatile global market.
MLA’s Manager of Market Information Ben Thomas said the turning point for Australian beef came in June when eastern states’ slaughter consistently tracked higher than year-ago levels for the first time since 2014, while at the same time, cattle prices dropped below year-ago levels, also for the first time in three years.
“These trends are likely to remain in place for the remainder of 2017 and have a significant impact on price and production expectations,” Mr Thomas said.
“It has been a good run for prices.”