Profit Tracker: Cattle Feeding Margins Inch Higher


Greg Henderson, Drovers

August 8, 2019


Cattle feeding margins climbed $12 higher to total an average of $61 per head for the week ending August 2. The increase came despite the fact average cash cattle prices were mostly steady at $115. Packer margins improved $5 per head at $163, according to the Sterling Beef Profit Tracker.


(Note: The Beef and Pork Profit Trackers are intended only as a benchmark for the average cash costs of feeding cattle and hogs.)


A year ago cattle feeders were losing an average of $53 per head on cash prices of $113. Feeder cattle represent 71% of the cost of finishing a steer compared to 73% a year ago.


The Beef and Pork Profit Trackers are calculated by Sterling Marketing Inc., Vale, Ore.


Farrow-to-finish pork producers saw their margins decline $9 per head with profits of $42. Lean carcass prices traded at $80.38 per cwt., $4.34 per cwt. higher than the previous week. A year ago pork producer margins were negative $3 per head. Pork packers saw average profits of $4 per head, $18 better than the previous week.


Sterling Marketing president John Nalivka projects cash profit margins for cow-calf producers in 2019 will average $138 per cow...


more, including links to Sterling Beef & Pork Profit Trackers