Cattle market grows slowly

Week Ending 18/05/18

Last weeks Prime Cattle sale saw in some instances a serious spike in prices being received for some categories of cattle.

Stock and Property: Markets during late last week and for most parts this week have shown a tendency to be fully firm or a touch better. Photo: Jennifer Hoar.

Stock and Property: Markets during late last week and for most parts this week have shown a tendency to be fully firm or a touch better. Photo: Jennifer Hoar.

The statement was made that if there were saleable cattle still out in the paddocks that upward shift in the market would probably flush some of this stock out. That would appear to be precisely what has occurred as Dubbo Agents for the sale on May, 17, have drawn for 8100 head.

This is one of the much bigger catalogues in recent times. Markets during late last week and for most parts this week have shown a tendency to be fully firm or a touch better. Certainly, a draw of this size will test the strength of any upward shift.

Whilst the cattle market is progressing slowly it has a long way to go before it falls in line with the sheep and lamb market.

Results from this side of the industry are astounding; one sale witnessed last week in the lamb section was a line of 362 heavy export cross lambs from the Yeoval district selling for $225.20 in one hit. For this time of the year in almost total drought conditions the mutton market is also at incredible levels.

Combine these prices with a buoyant wool market and it is easy to understand the almost seismic shift to the small stock side of our industry. Our decision makers have allowed the live sheep export process to continue albeit with more stringent protocols in place. Hopefully the added checks and balances will restore the general public’s confidence in authorities’ ability to handle this part of the sheep industry. One more incidence similar to that recently witnessed on television and social media will almost certainly sound the death knell of this part of our trade.

The recent beef expo at Rockhampton regarded by many as the Beef Capital of Australia threw a slightly different slant on the Chinese interest in the Australian rural industry.

My man on the ground felt that foreign investor and particularly the Chinese had seen their interest in purchasing rural packages wane and they were now more focused on food security.

One Chinese business family had already established their own trading company complete with feedlot and abattoir (as required by Chinese authorities) at an initial cost of $20 million and have secured a rare live cattle import licence. A trial shipment from Portland has already departed with another one on the starting blocks.

Analyst suggest our live cattle trade to Indonesia is currently valued at $1.2 billion, if the Chinese people are 1.5 million cattle short of their requirements per year as some experts suggest all hell is going to break loose in the market place if these two super powers of South East Asia suddenly confront each other over the available live cattle.

Back to things closer to home Dubbo today saw an outstanding result for most of our vendors when you consider the season at present over a vast area and the number of cattle in the market for the buyer’s competition.

Results were generally much better than expected.