CME: 2018 Beef Calf Crop About 28m Head


CME Group

via The Cattle Site - 11 March 2019


US - Today, we will take a look at the US calf crop numbers and geographic changes, as reported by producer surveys conducted by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), writes Steiner Consulting Group, DLR Division, Inc.


NASS compiles calf crop by-state. The number of beef-type calves is calculated based on the total calf crop (the total crop includes calved from beef-type and dairy cows). Of course, at the state level, the beef calf crop is directly proportional to where the cows that produced them are.


As shown in the following graphic, the 2018 beef calf crop was about 28.0 million head. States with over one million beef calves produced in 2018 were in the center of the country, from Montana to Texas. Texas produced the most calves (4.25 million). The next states were Oklahoma (about 2 million) and Missouri (nearly 1.9 million).


Between 2008 and 2018 (see the graphic), the number of beef calves declined by 122,000 head (down 0.4 percent). Texas had the most significant decline, followed by Tennessee, Kentucky, and Florida. South Dakota posted the largest year-over-year gain (up 202,000 calves), followed by Oklahoma (up 189,000).


Many of the bull calves produced by US dairy farms are part of the fed beef production system (i.e., they are grown in feedlots as steers to slaughter weight). The majority of the heifers produced on dairies are held for future milking. The graphic below shows the total US calf crop from 2008 to 2018 and demonstrates the state-level changes in the geography of the national dairy herd.


California, for example...


more, including calf crop maps [3]