QLD cattle kill lifts, grids ease

22 March 2016


Greater numbers of northern cattle are now entering the system, with last week’s Queensland cattle slaughter increasing 7% from the previous week, to almost 73,000 head. Victoria, SA and Tasmania had a public holiday last Monday, so the overall eastern states cattle kill declined 1% week-on-week, to just under 142,000 head.

Across the eastern seaboard, adult cattle slaughter will contract over the next two short processing weeks. Post-Easter, however, Queensland adult cattle slaughter typically increases for two months, before peaking in May, taking the national total higher. This year the rise will probably be smaller than normal for most states, constrained by cattle availability.

The increase in slaughter cattle supply, compounded by the A$ appreciating over the past two weeks, appears to be reflected in processor grids. The over-the-hook (OTH) cattle price indicators in Queensland, NSW and SA eased 3-10¢/kg cwt this week. In contrast, the indicators in Victoria were steady, while Tasmania lifted 15-30¢/kg cwt.

This week, the OTH grassfed trade steer indicator in:

  • Queensland averaged 493¢/kg, back 3¢/kg cwt week-on-week
  • NSW finished at 504¢/kg, back 5¢/kg cwt
  • Victoria was steady at 528¢/kg cwt

Meanwhile, the MSA OTH grassfed trade steer indicator in:

  • SA finished at 520¢/kg, back 10¢/kg cwt
  • Tasmania jumped 27¢/kg, to finish at 572¢/kg cwt

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