Beef should see big benefit from return to normal


Benjamin Herrold, Missouri Farmer Today

via AgUpdate - May 1, 2021


Missouri is a prolific beef cattle producing state, with over 2 million beef cows and usually abundant forage growth, and ag economists are cautiously projecting a good year for cattle producers in 2021.


Missouri ranks third in the nation in number of beef cows, and in some recent years has ranked as high as second. According to the USDA, Missouri began 2021 with 2.04 million beef cows, trailing only Texas and Oklahoma. That number is down only slightly from 2020, which saw 2.08 million beef cows in Missouri.


Scott Brown, University of Missouri Extension ag economist, says there have been stronger prices so far this year, particularly for fed cattle and beef.


“Demand has been strong and driving prices,” he says.


Brown says strong beef demand “has been happening for a while,” and he says beef should benefit from the COVID recovery and return to a more normal life, even more than other meats.


“You want to go out and celebrate and have a good meal, what do you put on a plate?” Brown says. “A nice steak.”


On the supply side...