Although there was no negotiated cash fed cattle trade reported by USDA through Monday afternoon, other sources reported live trade breaking out in various regions at $96-$97/cwt., another step lower from last week’s slide.
The average 5-area direct price for steers last week was $3.86 lower on a live basis at $101.73/cwt., according to USDA. The average dressed steer price was $5.69 lower at $165.83.
After attempts for stability early in the session, Live Cattle futures lost ground, while Feeder Cattle remained under pressure.
Live Cattle futures closed mixed, from an average of 39¢ lower (six contracts) to an average of 13¢ higher, with heavy trade and expanding open interest.
Except for 52¢ and 20¢ lower on either end of the board, Feeder Cattle futures closed an average of $1.15 lower.
Wholesale beef values were steady to weak on light to moderate demand and moderate to heavy offerings, according to the Agricultural Marketing Service.
Choice boxed beef cutout value was 36¢ lower Monday afternoon at $226.95/cwt. Select was 2¢ lower at $201.92.
Corn futures closed 1¢ lower through Mar ’20 and then mostly fractionally higher.
Soybean futures closed mostly unchanged to fractionally higher across the front half of the board and then mostly 3¢ higher.
Major U.S. financial indices closed narrowly mixed Monday.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 38 points higher. The S&P 500 closed fractionally lower. The NASDAQ was down 15 points.
As consumers seek to save time, convenience stores around the world provide a rapidly growing opportunity for U.S. beef and pork exports, according to the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF).
Specifically, according to a 2019 report by Euromonitor, per capita spending on foodservice products at convenience stores increased 14% worldwide between 2013 and 2018 and is projected to increase another 11% by 2023. South Korea led the way, with a 142% increase in per capita convenience store foodservice spending from 2013 to 2018; another 47% increase is projected by 2023.
Japan, Taiwan, the ASEAN region and Mexico are other fast-growing markets identified by Euromonitor, while a USDA report suggests China’s convenience store chains, which have historically focused on lower-priced processed foods, are beginning to expand premium and imported food offerings. This trend is likely to continue as younger Chinese consumers shift away from traditional retail outlets.
The USMEF uses funding from the USDA Market Access Program (MAP), the Beef Checkoff Program and the National Pork Board to promote U.S. beef and pork—especially processed beef and pork items, but also raw material for further processing—as the centerpiece of convenience store fare in several international markets.
“Just as important as promoting existing products, we are developing brand new ideas for packaged meals and protein snack items featuring U.S. beef and pork that fit well with consumer trends in each individual market,” says Dan Halstrom, USMEF President and CEO. “USMEF recognizes the scope of this opportunity and the enormous demand that is driving it. As the convenience store sector has taken off in various parts of the world, suppliers realize they need products to help meet the demand for these meat snacks and packaged meals. The trend is toward high-quality meat, and that is definitely an advantage for U.S. beef and pork.”