Negotiated cash fed cattle trade was mostly inactive on very light demand in the western Corn Belt through Monday afternoon, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service. Elsewhere, it was at a standstill.
Last week, live prices were at $122/cwt. in the Southern Plains and $124 in the North. Dressed prices were at $195.
Cattle futures closed narrowly mixed Monday, supported by improving fundamentals but balanced by declining wholesale beef values and weaker Lean Hog futures.
Live Cattle futures closed an average of 23¢ lower.
Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of 47¢ higher, from 7¢ higher at the front to $1.12 higher toward the back.
So far this morning, both are higher.
Choice boxed beef cutout value was $2.08 lower Monday afternoon at $321.20/cwt. Select was $2.15 lower at $281.46.
Although new-Crop Corn futures eased Monday, overall Corn and Soybean futures were supported by weaker crop conditions (Good and Excellent) week over week and year over year.
Corn futures closed mostly 6¢ to 9¢ lower through new-crop contracts, and generally 3¢ to 5¢ higher in other contracts.
Soybean futures closed mostly 6¢ to 9¢ higher in new-crop contracts and mostly 13¢ to 22¢ higher in the others.
Major U.S. financial indices rallied back Monday, supported by higher crude oil prices. CME WTI Crude Oil futures closed $1.21 to $2.02 higher through the front six contracts.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 586 points higher. The S&P 500 closed 58 points higher. The NASDAQ was up 111 points.
USDA and lawmakers continue to focus more money and proposed legislation on addressing the nation’s meat packing industry.
USDA announced Monday $55.2 million in competitive grant funding available through the new Meat and Poultry Inspection Readiness Grant (MPIRG) program.
“We are building capacity and increasing economic opportunity for small and midsized meat and poultry processors and producers across the country,” said Agriculture Secretary, Tom Vilsack. “Through MPIRG, meat and poultry slaughter and processing facilities can cover the costs for necessary improvements to achieve a Federal Grant of Inspection under the Federal Meat Inspection Act or the Poultry Products Inspection Act, or to operate under a state’s Cooperative Interstate Shipment program.”
MPIRG’s Planning for a Federal Grant of Inspection (PFGI) project is for processing facilities currently in operation and are working toward Federal inspection.
Earlier this month (June 11), as mentioned in Cattle Current, USDA announced it was beginning work on three proposed rules to support enforcement of the Packers and Stockyards (P&S) Act.
First, USDA intends to propose a new rule that will provide greater clarity to strengthen enforcement of unfair and deceptive practices, undue preferences, and unjust prejudices. Second, USDA will propose a new poultry grower tournament system rule, with the current inactive proposal to be withdrawn. Third, USDA will re-propose a rule to clarify that parties do not need to demonstrate harm to competition in order to bring an action under section 202 (a) and 202 (b) of the P&S Act.
Earlier that week, USDA announced $4 billion in assistance as part of the Build Back Better initiative, an effort designed to strengthen and transform critical parts of the U.S. food system. Investments made through Build Back Better will include a mix of grants, loans and innovative financing to address the shortage of small meat processing facilities across the country as well as the necessary local and regional food system infrastructure needed to support them.
Also on June 11, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), along with Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) announced new bipartisan legislation they said was meant to address anticompetitive practices in the meat and poultry industries.
“Increased consolidation is driving concerns about competitive market access for Iowa livestock producers,” Grassley said. “The recent cyberattack (JBS) added to existing vulnerabilities in our food supply chain, underscoring the importance of protecting the livelihoods of our family farmers. Food security is national security. This bill provides USDA with the necessary tools to beef up enforcement of the Packers and Stockyards Act, increase coordination with DOJ, FTC, and DHS and to foster a fair and functional marketplace for farmers and consumers alike.”
The Senators’ bill, the Meat Packing Special Investigator Act, would create the “Office of the Special Investigator for Competition Matters” within the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Packers and Stockyards Division.