Feeding, Packer Margins Exceed Triple Digits


Greg Henderson, FarmJournal's Pork

February 5, 2019


Profit margins for both cattle feeders and beef packers improved last week, with both trending over $100 per head. Feedyard closeouts rose $7 per head to $102, while packer margins rose $6 per head to $112, according to the Sterling Beef Profit Tracker.


For the week ending Feb. 1, cash cattle sold for an average of $124 per cwt., while the beef cutout closed the week at $216. The Beef and Pork Profit Trackers are calculated by Sterling Marketing Inc., Vale, Ore.


A year ago cattle feeders were earning an average of $202 per head. Feeder cattle represent 71% of the cost of finishing a steer compared with 72% a year ago.


Farrow-to-finish pork producers saw their margins decline $5 per head, with losses at $11. Lean carcass prices traded at $52.84 per cwt., $1.21 per cwt. lower than the previous week, and $3.90 better than a month ago. A year ago pork producer margins were a positive $32 per head. Pork packer margins averaged a profit of $22 per head last week...


more, including links to Sterling Beef & Pork Profit Trackers