World 08.01.2024

Sizzling Demand in the Live Dairy Cattle Market Amid Low Inventories: projections

Source: The DairyNews
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Despite projections of low milk prices in the first quarter of 2024, the live dairy cattle market is experiencing high demand and relatively elevated prices. The USDA's semi-annual cattle report in July indicated a dairy heifer count of 3.65 million head, the lowest mid-year report in two decades.
Sizzling Demand in the Live Dairy Cattle Market Amid Low Inventories: projections
Soirce: freepik.com
According to Phil Plourd, president of Ever.Ag Insights, the market will remain tight due to low inventories. Management practices have tightened, and beef and beef-on-dairy programs have accelerated, resulting in fewer "extra" heifers compared to previous years.

Kristin Paul from Jersey Marketing Service notes strong demand for Jerseys from various U.S. regions, including the Central Plains, I-29 corridor, Upper Midwest, West Texas, and the Northeast. The use of beef semen is contributing to sustained demand into 2024.

Jake Bettencourt, manager of TLAY Dairy Video Sales, reports a sizzling hot demand for cattle in their online auctions. Producers are expressing regret for not capitalizing on low cattle prices in previous years. For example, Texas Jersey springers that were priced around $1,400 to $1,500 in early 2022 and 2023 are now selling for higher prices. Bettencourt notes that buyers are filling gaps due to expansion, weather-related issues, and challenges in calf raising.

The current situation suggests that producers with surplus heifer replacements may capitalize on favorable prices in the coming year.
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February 2024
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