Peel: Cattle business looks brighter moving into 2022


Source: BioZyme Inc.

via The Fence Post - Jan 10, 2022


SAINT JOSEPH, Mo. — For cattle producers looking for a little good news in the future, look no further than the first part of 2022. Although challenges will exist — drought, cost of gain, labor shortages — enough changes are happening to help, especially those in the stocker sector.


Derrell Peel, endowed professor of agricultural economics at Oklahoma State University, recently offered his perspective on the big picture of the beef industry as a whole before addressing more specific topics on the stocker and feedlot side. Cow herd size is shrinking after a cyclical expansion that peaked in 2019, with the height of the calf crop coming in 2018. The combination of timelines in the beef cattle industry with all that has happened the last 18 months with COVID and the pandemic, feedlot numbers didn’t really peak until early in 2021. However, now due to lower supplies and heightened demands, all segments of the beef cattle industry should experience higher prices moving into 2022.


“The supply side is supporting the market and will continue to support the market in 2022. Part of the optimism is coming from the supply fundamentals,” Peel said. “Beef demand has been very good across wholesale, grocery stores, retail, even with disruptions. Exports will set new records in 2021. Even with two months left to report this year, we are well on the way to beat the old record that was set in 2018.”