Livestock markets in the US are depressed at the moment, with prices at their lowest level in 20 years. The dairy and beef industries have increased cull cow slaughter by 107,000 head and 237,000 head respectively over the last year, figures from the Livestock Marketing Information Centre (LMIC) show. In total cull cow slaughter is up 7.3%.
The latest prices reported by the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service show that prices are at their lowest since October 1998.
For the quarter ending 1 October, 2018, the average cow price in the US was $1,230, (€1,077) a drop from the prior quarter of $90 (down 7%), according to the USDA figures. Year-on-year decline was $380 per cow (a drop of 24%).
Weak milk prices
“That price adjustment reflects what producers see as the drop in the income earning potential of a purchased cow due to weak farm-level milk prices,” aLMIC statement said.
Prices have not improved in any state, with just Arizona and South Dakota reporting no change to third quarter prices.
“Year-over-year, two states had a drop of larger than 30%, Minnesota [33%] and Ohio [31%],” the statement added.
Prices for freshly calved heifers at the Turlock sale last week ranged from €600 to €1,100. Any heifers that had already calved were sold separately to their calves. Calves typically sold for in the region of $30 to $50 per head (€25 to €45).
This 785kg springing heifer sold for $1,125 (€992).
This 670kg springing heifer sold for $1,200 (€1,058).
This 580kg springing heifer sold for $950 (€838).
This 535kg springing heifer sold for $700 (€617).
This 435kg Jersey cross bred springing heifer sold for $825 (€728).
This 608kg springing heifer sold for $1,000 (€882).
This 572kg springing heifer sold for $900 (€794).