Where to with Beef Prices?Thursday, Jul 27, 2000
There is a strong linkage between the first two news items below. The significant lift in schedule beef
prices in the past six months is lifting demand for beef weaners from this years Friesian bull
The US beef cycle has been in a long phase of relatively steady supply rather than the more dramatic
earlier cycles of breeding up , heifer retention, price collapse inducing slaughter compounding over
For the past seven years 'next year' for better beef prices from the US has remained just that - next
year. It seems ironic that the only reliable factor in this years price for export beef is the continued
irrational posturing of our government fortuitously ensuring that the NZ exchange rate stays
around 45 cents.
Personally I believe dairy farmers and rearers have never been rewarded reasonably for the relative
effort that is involved in their part of the production process of bull beef. It seems that this imbalance
will continue with the allocation of changed costs affecting this seasons inputs.
The old South Island adage 'avoid fattening wethers and cattle unless you have deep pockets' may be
restating the obvious but early US indications show a need to be cautious with bull beef optimism.
Is the excitement of farming its unpredictability!