Weekly Australian Cattle Summary

AUSTRALIA - This report is a collection of weekly cattle price summaries from each Australian state by the Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA).
calendar icon 14 September 2012
clock icon 6 minute read
Meat & Livestock Australia

South Australia

Increased Yardings

There were similar sized very mixed quality yardings at the SA LE and Mt. Gambier, supply at Naracoorte and Millicent increased.

SA LE yarding sold to solid competition from the usual local and interstate buyers. Feeder orders were to the fore on a large draft of 251 lightweight pastoral bred cattle. Limited numbers of vealers were available with yearlings making up the bulk of the yarding. Feeder orders sourced most light and medium weight steers, while the trade purchased the C3 medium and heavyweights at dearer levels. The heifers tended to follow a similar pattern.

Naracoorte had an increased yarding with mixed quality runs of local cattle and increased numbers of pastoral bred cows. These were met with erratic competition from the usual SA and Victorian trade and export buyers. Excellent quality supplementary feds in the last agents run attracted the strongest bidding. Restockers and feeders were also quite active.

Mt Gambier’s yarding sold to steady competition. The majority of cows tended to lose ground while many of the grown steers were in 2 score condition and needed more sunshine to finish to desired levels.

Millicent’s larger yarding of mainly young cattle sold generally to feeder and restocker activity, with limited purchases being made by the trade.

Young Cattle Dearer, Export Categories Cheaper

Feeder and restockers purchased mainly lightweight C muscled vealer steers which were between 190¢ and 212¢ or around 8¢/kg less. Vealer heifers to the trade sold from 185¢ to 244¢ to be unchanged to 15¢/kg dearer. Yearling C2 and C3 medium and heavyweight steers sold from 175¢ to 228¢, with B muscled supplementary feds to 241¢/kg.

Grown steer C3 medium and heavyweights sold from 175¢ to 202¢/kg to be basically unchanged and averaging around 350¢ cwt. Medium and heavy 2 to 5 score beef cows sold from 114¢ to 151¢, to be generally unchanged to 9¢ cheaper and mainly 255¢ to 295¢/kg cwt. Pastoral bred cows sold from 103¢ to 153¢/kg.


Minor falls in supply

Deteriorating seasonal conditions continue to force good numbers of cattle onto the market with only a moderate fall in overall supply at physical markets covered by MLA’s NLRS. Longreach experienced a reduction in numbers while all other centres were without much change.

Young cattle generally displayed a wide variation in quality and included a large single vendor line of 1,174 head of plain condition heifers at the Roma store sale. The standard of heavy steers and bullocks was generally good, and was boosted by consignments from the far west of the state. Most of the cows were in the 3 and 4 score range, nevertheless increased numbers of plain cows were being penned.

Competition decreases

Buyer representation was good at markets early in the week however by mid week attendance was not as good as the previous sales. Restocker activity early in the week was very subdued and at the Roma store sale restocker buyers mainly watched the market and most were reluctant to purchase. However, by mid-week the forecast of some rain lifted enthusiasm and prices responded accordingly for young lightweight cattle returning to the paddock.

Steers and bullocks commenced the week on a firm trend however by mid and late week markets average prices noticeably slipped. Cows experienced a similar trend with only small reductions at early week sales, while limited competition towards mid and late week markets saw prices drop considerably.

Grown cattle cheaper

Calves returning to the paddock improved 12¢ to average 208¢ and sold to 250.2¢/kg. Vealer heifers averaged 5¢ dearer at 184¢ and sold to 210¢/kg. Lightweight yearling steers returning to the paddock averaged 1¢ dearer at 209¢ and sold to 232¢/kg. Medium weight C2 yearling steers to feed lost 5¢, while better C3s improved to average 199¢ with sales to 224.2¢/kg. Heavy feeders averaged 3¢ cheaper at 191¢/kg. Heavy steers and bullocks lost 9¢ to average 181¢/kg. Lean cows experienced very little change, while heavy 4 scores lost 7¢ to average 147¢/kg.

New South Wales

Supply lifts

NSW cattle throughput as reported by MLA’s NLRS lifted 8% week-on-week as most of the larger saleyards recovered from significant declines last week. Gunnedah recorded an 11% increase with the yarding consisting predominately of grown cattle. Inverell yarded 22% more cattle than last week, while Forbes and Scone recorded increases of 26% and 38% respectively. Young cattle were in greater numbers in Forbes and Scone, while good grown steer and cow numbers were reported at CTLX. The only saleyard to decline was Dubbo, back 13%. Quality plain

Saleyards have continued to consist predominately of plainer lines across all categories, as the effect of the winter months on the younger cattle can still be seen. Crop fed lines are still filtering through the market as the warmer spring weather intensifies. There were reports of high quality supplementary fed heavy grown steers at Tamworth and Forbes while Gunnedah had a good supply of secondary yearlings suitable for restockers and feeders. The usual buyers were in attendance across all saleyards, however competition was subdued for the plainer lines as the dryer weather conditions are affecting buyer demand.

Prices decline

The majority of vealer steers were light weights which sold to restockers at similar levels to last week averaging 212¢/kg. Medium weight C2 vealer heifers topped at 233¢ to finish on 196¢/kg. The large percentage of light yearling steers ranged from 160¢ to 220¢ as the heavy weight C3’s to slaughter finished on 195¢/kg. Medium weight C3 yearling heifers to processors eased slightly to settle on 192¢/kg. The bulk of grown steers were heavy weight C3’s ranging in price from 151¢ to 205¢, while light grown heifers to slaughter topped at 188¢ to make 167¢/kg. Medium weight D2 cows were back 7¢ on 124¢ while heavy weight D4’s to slaughter eased 6¢ to average 144¢/kg.


Yardings reduce

Following on from last week’s cheaper trend, cattle yardings across MLA’s NLRS reported markets reduced by 9%. Not all markets reported a decrease however, Warrnambool yarded 37% more cattle and Shepparton increased by 21%. Ballarat also gained 20% as did Wodonga with a 9% increase, while Camperdown drew 7% more cattle. Numbers at all other markets were down, most notably Pakenham which retreated 47% and Leongatha which yarded 28% less cattle. Supply at Colac halved, while Bairnsdale throughput was back 8%.

Young cattle quality lacklustre

Cows made up the largest portion of the yarding, followed by yearlings, with steers and heifers in even numbers. Heavy yearling steers were in good supply as were medium weight heifers. There was a good supply of vealer steers and heifers.

Cattle quality varied between markets however, the young cattle selection was average and showed the effects of poor feed quality throughout winter. Older lines of export bullocks and heavy cows were better presented with good lines available especially at Leongatha, Pakenham and Shepparton.

Reluctant bidding from buyers

Overall buyer demand was weaker however there were pockets of keen competition such as at Ballarat, where the presence of a few extra buyers buoyed competition and prices. Conversely not all buyers were present at Wodonga which saw reduced demand, especially in the grown cattle sale. Generally demand was weaker, however there was still good levels of buyer attendance, especially from restockers and feeders keen to buy cattle at lower prices.

The Victorian yearling steer indicator fell 12¢ to 175¢, while yearling heifers were most resistant to price falls, only lowering 3¢ to 184¢/kg lwt. Heavy steers dropped 9¢ to 182¢/kg lwt. Bullocks sold 9¢ cheaper at 181¢/kg lwt. Medium cows managed to move a faction higher to 136¢/kg lwt. Heavy cows however followed the broader market trend and sold 7¢ lower at 142¢/kg lwt.

TheCattleSite News Desk

© 2000 - 2023 - Global Ag Media. All Rights Reserved | No part of this site may be reproduced without permission.