Tighter supplies give cattle producers more leverage

A South Dakota cattleman says there’s been a shift in the cattle industry.

President-elect of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Todd Wilkinson says tighter cattle supplies create more opportunities for producers.  “We suddenly have the upper hand with the packers, and they don’t have a stranglehold on the market anymore,” he says.  “It’s refreshing to be able to see some active bidding going on there. They need your product.”

He tells Brownfield demand has been strong and if that continues, there could be more profitable days ahead.  “You know that cow/calf producer and then a little bit that feedlot operator, I believe it seeing some light at the end of the tunnel,” he says.  “And personally, the way that our calves are shaping up for sale, I’m optimistic.”

Demand, however, remains the wild card.  And if the economy continues to slow, it could weaken demand and pressure prices.

AUDIO: Todd Wilkinson, NCBA

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