GFM Network News


Fed cattle supply interest picks up in new year

The Markets with Deb McMillin, from the February 2021 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Fed cattle The start of fed cattle trading in 2021 saw active interest in supply with prices higher than year-end. The backlog from the spring of 2020 appears to have been cleaned up and packers are looking to secure additional inventory. The first weekly average reported in 2021 was $145.53/cwt. This was $1.16/cwt higher than […] Read more

McMillin: Fed-cattle prices stubborn to move

The Markets with Deb McMillin, from the January 2021 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Fed cattle December is typically a strong month for fed cattle prices and while prices have started moving higher, the rate of increase has been disappointing. Recent foodservice restrictions, cancelled holiday parties, uncertainty around jobs and income all have an impact on beef movement. However, more people working from home and limited restaurant spending has […] Read more


McMillin: Large carcasses weigh on fed market

The Markets with Deb McMillin, from the December 2020 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Fed Cattle As packers worked through backlogged inventory and the seasonal increase, prices were pushed lower. More longer-fed cattle came to market, evident in record-high carcass weights. Carcass weights hit 969 lbs. on November 7, 29 lbs. over last year and an increase of 27 lbs. from the previous month. The additional tonnage weighs heavily […] Read more

Larger carcass weights and falling live cattle futures made way for lower fed cattle prices by mid-October.

McMillin: Cattle prices come under pressure

The Markets with Deb McMillin, from the November 2020 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Fed Cattle Larger carcass weights and falling live cattle futures made way for lower fed cattle prices by mid-October. Slaughter rates remain solid while packers work through the remaining backlog. However, carcass weights have crept up in recent weeks in Canada, sounding a cautionary tone as feedlots become less current and more pounds must work […] Read more


Cattle-on-feed numbers in Alberta and Saskatchewan totalled 772,889 head on September 1.

McMillin: Cattle-on-feed numbers above year-ago levels

The Markets with Deb McMillin, from the October 2020 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Fed cattle Fed cattle prices held mostly steady in September, with a sideways trading range of $133/cwt to $134/cwt. The week ending September 25 saw fed cattle prices average $134.01/cwt; however, cattle were purchased with a longer pickup time and buyers were less aggressive, leaving the market slightly softer as September ended. Increased carcass weights […] Read more

Cattle prices hold mostly steady

The Markets with Deb McMillin, from the September 28, 2020 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Fed cattle Good demand, strong cut-out value, steady kill rates and good retail featuring have contributed to mostly steady prices throughout the summer months. However, the start of September brought a seasonally lower move in the cash fed cattle market. Typically, larger front-end supplies lead to longer packer lift times and larger carcass weights. This […] Read more


Fed-cattle prices moving higher

The Markets with Deb McMillin, from the September 2020 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Fed cattle Impressive summer slaughter rates coupled with strong wholesale demand have moved fed prices higher after weeks of a steady trading range. The fed steer price in Alberta in mid-August was $136.92/ cwt, which was a jump of $2.81/cwt from the previous week. Cash-to-cash basis is narrow at -$1.47/cwt, which compares to -$3.39/cwt a […] Read more

Fed cattle market rebounds after hitting near-decade lows

The Markets with Deb McMillin, from the August 2020 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Fed cattle After hitting lows not seen since 2012 in May, the fed cattle market has rebounded over the last several weeks. Two weeks after sinking to a low of $107/cwt in early May, the market recovered, climbing $41/cwt to a weekly average of $148/cwt. Since May the market trended lower through June but has […] Read more


Decreased prices, market uncertainty and reduced available pen space led to fewer placements in April.

Weekly slaughter levels lowest in decades

The Markets with Deb McMillin, from the June 2020 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Fed cattle This spring, weekly slaughter levels were nearly 60 per cent lower than a year ago and the lowest recorded since 1973. From mid-March to the first week of May, the cash market dropped $50.56/cwt to reach a low of $107.00/cwt. Although volumes are light, losses on cattle sold into this lower-cash market are […] Read more

Market uncertainty continues to drive live cattle futures lower.

Reduced shifts, closures see cash cattle prices sink

The Markets with Deb McMillin, from the May 2020 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Fed cattle Fed cattle cash prices in recent weeks have moved sharply lower as uncertainty in the market continues to drive live cattle futures lower. Reduced packing plant shifts and temporary closures across North America in recent weeks have pressured the market. Disruptions to consumers’ lives and livelihoods have shifted consumer spending. Product demand at […] Read more