The U.S. cattle industry has enjoyed some exciting times over the past few years with record prices and good times may continue but operators need to prepare for a downturn and manage accordingly, say Southwest cattle specialists.
That’s the message that more than 1,680 beef cattle producers heard during the 61st Texas A&M Beef Cattle Short Course held earlier this week.
“These are exciting times indeed, but are they here to stay?” said Dr. Jason Cleere, conference coordinator and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension beef cattle specialist, addressing one of the highest-attended short course events ever.
“I think there is a lot to look forward to down the road,” he added.
Derrell Peel, Oklahoma State University livestock marketing economist, said the cattle market may have topped earlier this year, but says a downward spiral in prices is not likely anytime soon. However, Peel said to “prepare for lower prices” according to decades of past charts and data.
“It’s been fun on the way up; it’s been easy to make money on the way up,” Peel said. “There still will be some good times ahead, but you’re going to have to manage costs in relation to the market. It all goes back to cost management.”