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Beef Prices Steady, Showing Signs Of Recovery After Winter

Beef prices dropped significantly for many producers after a drought over the spring and summer forced them to downsize many herds for the winter.

That had the effect of dropping beef prices as auction houses were flooded with a much higher volume of cattle than normal.

That drop in prices looks to be steadying as while producers continue to downsize, they'll be doing so at much more regular numbers for this season.

Livestock Markets Association of Canada President Brock Taylor says that the stabilization being felt by producers is also likely to be felt by consumers.

"Well, I think they've kind of found a level that they're staying at the stores for consumers," said Taylor.

While many producers will be hoping to see a sharp increase in prices so that they can make more revenue, Taylor says that's not likely - at least, for now.

"I don't think you'll see them going up a whole bunch right now just with the amount that is going to be available at this time. I do think there's going to be a shortage down the road, where we might see some higher prices," said Taylor, "I don't know if you'll see it this fall but it'll be after that."

"I think they'd like to see more. The cost on everything is more, so they need more out of every animal to break even or make a profit."

That shortage will likely be part of the cause for a boost in the price of beef for many producers, but for now, they'll be downsizing their herds in order to keep costs low over the winter.

"They'll be working on it over the fall here," said Taylor, "From now till the end of February they'll be downsizing. So by next spring or next fall, you'll see for sure the price be better than it is now. It's not horrible now, things are holding together pretty good."

Taylor says that producers are looking to get a bit more moisture out both this fall and next year, in order to ease their biggest concern.

"Moisture, I think, is going to be the biggest thing to get grass and seed, and water, especially in this corner of the world we live," said Taylor, "Water's going to become a big issue."

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