Fall cattle run numbers remain high

Expect the coming week’s cattle sales to run at full capacity


By Glen Hallick - MarketsFarm, Columnist

via Manitoba Co-operator - November 19, 2021


As the fall run continues into November, it’s not just the number of cattle heading to auction that has been weighing on values — it’s also the high cost of feed, according to Brad Kehler, auctioneer and sales representative at Grunthal Auction Mart.


“We’re still seeing downward pressure on both cows and feeder cattle across the board,” he said, noting more of those auctioned are heading to Eastern Canada.


“The commodity markets have gone up. Certain commodities have doubled or tripled their prices. Forages for sure have doubled in price and corn silage has gone up $20 to $30 per tonne.”


Above-normal temperatures this fall lent a hand to the auctions by keeping more cattle than normal on the pastures, which Kehler said has helped to spread out the number of animals coming to auction from week to week.


“Most of the cows are coming off the grass this week or next week,” he said.


At Grunthal’s Nov. 9 sale, the auction processed 1,222 head compared to 827 sold the week before.


On a week-to-week basis, the decline in prices may not be as apparent, with some increases in some weight categories. For example, the 800- to 900-lb. feeder steers at Grunthal fetched $130 to $172.50 per hundredweight on Nov. 2, but bumped up to $170 to $178.50/cwt this week.


On the whole, prices province-wide have been trending downward...