Here I am again, quarantined, listening to a Grateful Dead concert on YouTube. Just thinking about all the craziness in the world right now. Too many variables, so we can just break it down to the one thing that matters most to us right now, the cattle market.
Let's get to the plant closure aspect of this deal. JBS Greeley is planning a shut down Monday for extra deep cleaning. Now, JBS has since come out with a statement saying that has been a planned shutdown for awhile. They say the plant should be up and running Wednesday, or Thursday. The labor union wants the plant to stay closed all week for deep cleaning. Obviously the earlier the plant opens the better. There are many hog processing plants that are closing for as much as 2 weeks as well. One, a Smithfield owned processor in Sioux Falls, SD, that kill 22k head of hogs a day. Just a little side note to remember. A Chines company owns Smithfield. As you can imagine, this leads to some uncertainty in the markets next week. The Monday Morning livestock open will be dreaded among many. I think consensus is the market to be limit offer. I will say it is not always good to follow the crowd, everybody was certain we were going to 130, maybe 140 this January. With that said we will not be able to take out contact lows in the June live cattle futures on Monday due to limit restrictions. As funny as it sounds, that is a good thing.
How about this cull cow and bull market?????
So the prices inflated rapidly, and then, in quick work, deflated, leaving our cull cow and bull market towards the lower end of a long term range. The panic ground beef buying that drove the demand for our cull cows and bulls higher, was fiercely met by huge supply of Dairy cows hitting the market, at the same time the restaurants were going offline. It was a meat backup nightmare.
Looking forward, this next week should see the most of the dairy liquidation. We will see how everyone has handled the backup of these Dairy cows. I know I heard at one plant, there were as many as 2000 hd of cows waiting to be worked that day. Big numbers. With these big supply numbers, bringing the price down to the point where it takes a high yielding cow to bring in the mid 40's, I do not see very many mountain cows coming to town. The pasture conditions are still pretty good around our region. I do believe the cows who aren't carrying a calf, will be turned out to green grass anyways. Buy a little time as they say.
I have a feeling I might be writing these posts a little more often these days. As far as for the Sale barn, my schedule is every other week from now on. Our next sale is 4/22/20. That is a pair, and late bred special. We also will have some good turn out feeder cattle. Ready for grass. After that is our 5/6/20 back to grass feeder special. Following the back to grass special will be the Loma Livestock featuring Diamond Peak female and bull sale. We will have yearling heifer, ready to breed, as well as pairs, yearling bulls, and some 2 year old bulls as well.
This is the Sioux Falls, SD Smithfield Shutdown.