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Barley Prices Continue To Impact Producer Profits

Natasha Wilkie is a Cattle Specialist with the Ministry of Agriculture and has been monitoring what's happening with the feed prices.

She says a strong Canadian dollar and higher feed barley prices are limiting upward movement in the cattle market.

"We saw barley prices, like feed barley prices, based out of Lethbridge. They remained fairly steady at $7.40 a bushel, which is rather high prices, but they stayed steady. The other markets we tracked for feed grains are corn out of Iowa and Omaha. Iowa's price went up, while Omaha's came down. So, you know, we're just watching these prices weekly and seeing where they go."

The Ministry of Agriculture's Weekly Cattle Marketing Report is out, it continues to show limited reported in some weight categories.

"Prices were reported for three out of the seven feeder steer weight categories. The 500-600lb weight category ended the week averaging $227.00 per cwt; while the 600-700lb weight category ended the week averaging $211.50. The last reported weight category was the 700-800lb weight category, and it ended the week averaging $196.79 per cwt. Saskatchewan’s feeder heifers had prices reported for a majority of their weight classes. Reported prices ranged from $199.75 per cwt for the 400-500lb weight category to $160.00 per cwt for the 800+lb weight category. The 600-700lb weight category, saw a large price increase, with prices improving by $5.25 per cwt to end the week averaging $179.25 per cwt. The 700-800lb weight category saw a small price decrease, with prices declining by $1.04 per cwt to end the week averaging $169.13 per cwt."

She notes live, non-fed cattle in Alberta were mixed, week-over-week.

"The price of D2 slaughter cows moved higher with prices improving $1.04 per cwt to average $102.75 per cwt; while the price of D3 slaughter cows saw a price decrease of $1.15 per cwt from the previous week to average $88.60 per cwt. The fed cattle price for Alberta fed steers this week was reported at $164.32 per cwt, a price increase of $0.90 from the previous week’s price of $163.42."

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