Prices have been strong for butcher and feeder cattle, supported mainly by low numbers of cattle heading to auction in Manitoba.
The expected fall run has been delayed by unseasonably warm temperatures across most of Manitoba, as pastures have remained in good condition.
“Because we’ve had good fall weather, that’s kept cattle out on pasture a bit longer,” Harold Unrau of Grunthal Livestock Auction Mart said. He expected to see cattle numbers increasing at auction in the coming weeks.
During the week ended Oct. 1, about 2,500 cattle came to auction, compared to the prior week which saw about 2,700 head come to the ring.
Butcher cattle prices have remained steady at around $60-$80 per hundredweight. Feeder cattle around 400 to 500 lbs. have been around $190-$225/cwt, while prices have strengthened to between $160 and $183/cwt for 700- to 800-lb. cattle.
Unrau believed strong demand was partially accounting for higher prices for heavier cattle, along with lower-than-usual supply.
“Once more cattle come to market, that’ll be the true test,” he said.