GFM Network News


Klassen: Yearling prices stay sluggish, calves hold value

Compared to last week, western Canadian yearling prices were steady to $4 lower; calves and grass cattle were relatively unchanged. Early in the week, the mood was quite depressing; yearlings were under pressure with feedlot buyers on the sidelines. By Friday, the market appeared to be well established. Backgrounding operators have been active sellers over […] Read more

Tyson to shutter beef facility as workers tested

Beef plant employees asked to isolate at home

Reuters — A Tyson Foods unit said Thursday it will temporarily halt production at a beef facility at Pasco, Washington, adding to the meat processing plant the company has had to shutter as it tests workers for COVID-19. Tyson said Wednesday it was closing two pork processing plants, including its largest in the U.S., further […] Read more


Klassen: Uncertainty defines feeder market

'Hope' factor remains supportive

Compared to last week, western Canadian yearling prices were down $3-`$5 on average while calves were unchanged to down $2. Sales were characterized by low volumes and limited buying interest. Feedlot operators are hesitant to step forward in the current environment, with packing plants on both sides of the border reducing capacity. At the same […] Read more

Cargill to temporarily idle High River beef plant

Packing plant hit by COVID-19 outbreak; another 67 cases linked to JBS plant

Reuters — Cargill Ltd. said Monday it had begun the process of temporarily idling its beef plant at High River, Alta. because of the COVID-19 outbreak as provincial health officials said hundreds of workers at the plant had become infected. In her daily media update, Alberta chief medical officer Deena Hinshaw said a total of […] Read more


“The problem with the dietary guidelines talking about sustainability is you have nutrition experts without any sustainability expertise.” – Shalene McNeil, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.

Keeping beef on the plate

Concerns about beef’s place in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans are prompting the largest beef organization in the U.S. to advocate for a focus on nutritional science

The latest diet trends have shone a spotlight on protein, and for good reason. The emphasis on protein in popular programs such as the keto diet provides an opportunity for beef to stake its claim as the top choice for consumers wanting more protein. “The more we get protein on their radar, the importance of […] 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


Workers in the JBS beef plant at Brooks, Alta. appear in a screen shot from a 2018 corporate video. (JBS Canada video screengrab via YouTube)

Third major Alberta beef plant confirms COVID-19 cases

JBS in Brooks is the latest with infected workers, but will continue operations

UPDATED, April 17 — Cases of COVID-19 have now been confirmed at three of Alberta’s major beef packing plants. Three cases of COVID-19 were confirmed Wednesday at the JBS beef packing plant in Brooks, said Tom Hesse, Local 401 president with United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Canada. JBS Canada spokesman Cameron Bruett confirmed some […] Read more

Beef cattle producers seek new set-aside plan

Cattle groups, Tories call for revival of BSE-era program

Canada’s beef cattle producer groups and federal Conservatives want to see the revival of a BSE-era program to hold cattle back against the risk of further lost options for slaughter. The Canadian Cattlemen’s Association on Monday hearkened back to its March 24 list of recommendations to the federal government for support measures against the impacts […] Read more


Klassen: Weaker fed cattle prices weigh on feeder market

It appears finishing feedlots and cattle buyers are coming to terms with the fact that the COVID-19 pandemic may last longer than earlier anticipated. The “hope” factor that this environment will be short-lived has evaporated. Compared to last week, western Canadian feeder cattle markets traded $3 to as much as $10 lower, with yearlings absorbing […] Read more

The new grading label conveys grading information to Canada’s international customers.

Canada Beef cooks up new marketing ideas

Marketing: News Roundup from the April 2020 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Canada Beef is looking for new ways to promote old favourites such as ground beef, Michael Young told attendees of the Saskatchewan Beef Industry Conference earlier this year. The ground beef category represents 60 to 65 per cent of retail sales, Young, president of Canada Beef, told the crowd. But a lack of recent innovations […] Read more