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The Midwest Cattleman · August 5, 2021 · P6
      USDA Reports Show Reduced Cattle Numbers Now and Later

      By Derrell Peel - Oklahoma State University

         The July USDA Cattle on  2019 level.    The report was  ward for the foreseeable fu-
      Feed report shows July feed- well anticipated with place- ture.
      lot inventories of 11.29 mil- ments down slightly more                  USDA also released the
      lion  head, down  1.3 percent  than the average pre-report  July Cattle report.    The re-
      from last year and down 1.7  estimate.                                port shows, as expected, that
      percent compared to 2019.             This latest cattle on feed  cattle numbers continue to
      June placements were 1.67  report confirms that the feed- decline  in the U.S.,  possibly
      million head, down 7.1 per- lot situation continues to im- aggravated by additional liq-
      cent  from 2020  and down  prove relative to the slaugh- uidation resulting from the                    lion head, down fractionally
      5.2 percent from June 2019.   ter capacity constraints that  widespread drought in the                  from last year.  The 2021 calf
      Feedlot marketings in June  plagued fed cattle markets in  western half of the country.                 crop is down 3.3 percent from
      were 2.02 million head, up  early 2021.  The July 1 feed- The estimated July 1 inven-                   the 2018 peak of 36.3 million
      2.7 percent year over year  lot inventory is down 816,000  tory of all cattle and calves is             head.
      and  4.1 percent above  the  head from the February  100.9 million head, down 1.3                          The estimated feeder sup-
                                                           peak, a de- percent year over  year and            ply outside of feedlots, calcu-
                                                           crease of 6.7  down 1.9 percent from the           lated from the July 1 inven-
                                                           percent.   It  cyclical  peak  July  inventory     tories of steers, other heifers
                                                           appears that  of 102.8 million head in 2018.       and calves, is 36.1 million
                                                           the      feed-     The July beef cow invento-      head, down 1.6 percent year
                                                           lot industry  ry is 31.4 million head, down        over year.    The July 1 esti-
                                                           has    finally 2.0 percent from 2020.   The        mate of inventories in all
                                                           moved past  current beef cow invento-              feedlots is 13.4 million head,
                                                           the cyclical  ry is down 3.1 percent from          down 1.5 percent from last
                                                           bulge of cat- the 2018 cyclical peak of 32.4       year.
                                                           tle numbers  million head.  The estimated             The overall message of
                                                           and should  July 1 inventory of beef re-           these two reports is that de-
                                                           be operating  placement heifers is 4.3 mil-        clining cattle numbers are
                                                           with declin- lion  head, down 2.3 percent          improving cattle market con-
                                                           ing numbers  year over year.  The estimat-
                                                           going      for- ed 2021 calf crop is 35.1 mil-                    continued on page 9
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