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Boxed Beef Prices Are Increasing

MORNING LIVESTOCK OUTLOOK

Boxed beef prices are increasing on lighter slaughter.

As of Dec 18th, steer and heifer dressed weights were 896.8 pounds down 3 pounds from previous week.  So far, it doesn’t appear cattle are being backed up unless packers are taking contracted cattle and their own cattle and leaving showlist cattle on feed.  The grading percent at 83.8% is up which could be an indication cattle are on feed longer

A year ago, daily slaughter was 500,000 head. On Wed January 19, slaughter was 457,000 head.  Comparing weights in 2022 to 2021 dressed weights this year were up 1.52 pounds but considering a year ago there were 43,000 more hogs killed.  Like cattle, unless packers are taking the contracted hogs and their own captive supplies before hogs on the open market, it doesn’t appear there is a significant change in weights.

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