Northwest beef sector remains strong

Meadow Lake Livestock Sales Ltd. hosted a black angus bull sale March 19, an event that once again proved beef prices remain high throughout the industry. According to Farm Credit Canada, prices for all classes of cattle this year have eclipsed previous records, but the group also warns beef producers to practice good risk management because high prices can also mean price volatility. However, experts say prices are expected to remain strong for the foreseeable future, with wide-ranging ramifications both within and beyond the beef sector. Here, Brent Brooks of Meadow Lake Livestock Sales Ltd. watches for bids from the capacity crowd in attendance for last week’s sale

Meadow Lake Livestock Sales Ltd. hosted a black angus bull sale March 19, an event that once again proved beef prices remain high throughout the industry. According to Farm Credit Canada, prices for all classes of cattle this year have eclipsed previous records, but the group also warns beef producers to practice good risk management because high prices can also mean price volatility. However, experts say prices are expected to remain strong for the foreseeable future, with wide-ranging ramifications both within and beyond the beef sector. Here, Brent Brooks of Meadow Lake Livestock Sales Ltd. watches for bids from the capacity crowd in attendance for last week’s sale

by Phil Ambroziak

There’s no bull surrounding the ongoing success of the cattle market.

Meadow Lake Livestock Sales Ltd. held one of two annual bull sales March 19, an event that attracted a standing-room-only crowd and prices above those earned from the previous year.

“It was definitely a huge turnout – she was jam-packed,” remarked Brent Brooks of Meadow Lake Livestock Sales. “Sales were just excellent.”

A total of 60 black Angus bulls were sold throughout the afternoon, as well as three open heifers. The average sale price for yearlings was $6,047 while two-year-old bulls sold for an average of $6,810. The highest sales price of the day was $13,500 for a two-year-old bull purchased by Roger Parsonage of Maple Creek, SK while Meadow Lake’s Lee Cockrum paid top dollar for a yearling, parting ways with $9,000 in exchange for the animal.

“Numbers this year were higher than last year,” noted Sheldon Shkopich, a rancher from Island Hill Angus on hand to sell bulls that day. “Prices were up by about $1,500 to $2,000 per head. The cattle market has been really strong as of late and that relayed back to the bulls at this sale. Talk around the stockyards is it’s likely to stay this way at least for the next few years.”

Along with Shkopich, others who brought bulls to market that day included the Bowerman Brothers Ranch, Nesset Lake Angus and Wishbone Ranch.

Meanwhile, Shkopich reiterated his pleasure in seeing the industry continue down the successful path it’s currently on.

“It’s very positive to see so many people out to the sale and so many people buying,” he said. “A lot of people wanted heifer bulls, so that means there are a lot of people out there looking to breed which is just going to keep the industry going stronger than ever.”

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