Last Updated: September 02, 2015

Weather: Canberra -1°C - 16°C . Cloud clearing.

Cattle

Cattle on feed numbers in southern states on rise while Queensland numbers tumble

On the rise: Feedlots in southern Australia are fuller than a year ago.

On the rise: Feedlots in southern Australia are fuller than a year ago. Source: News Limited

SOUTHERN Australian feedlots are fuller than they were a year ago.

The increased numbers in feedlots in NSW, South Australia and Victoria offset a fall in Australia’s major lotfeeding state, Queensland.

There's a lag in the reporting times, with the figures ­recently released showing ­capacity for the quarter ending December last year.

But those figures show the drought in Queensland and the drought-induced hike in feed prices had pushed feedlot numbers in that state down.

At the end of December, there were 476,033 cattle on feed in Queensland, down 5.5 per cent on the end of ­August numbers.

Australian Lot Feeders ­Association president Don Mackay said drought was the key factor for the fall.

“Dry conditions increased grain and roughage prices while also negatively impacting upon the quality and quantity of suitable feeder cattle,” Mr Mackay said.

In contrast, feedlot use in Victoria, NSW and South Australia all rose.

At December last year, Victorian feedlotters had 49,050 cattle on feed, compared with 40,000 a year earlier.

NSW feedlots also had more on feed — 245,000 compared with 221,000.

Mr Mackay said feedlots provided an avenue for finishing cattle when seasonal conditions tightened, and southern producers were taking advantage.

And while traditional beef markets of Japan and South Korea took less grain-fed product last year, other markets were more than picking up the slack, according to Meat and Livestock Australia’s chief economist Tim McRae.

“Grain-fed exports were up 10 per cent for the calendar year with declines in Japan and Korea offset by significant ­increases to most other markets including China, the Middle East and the European Union,” Mr McRae said.

Last year, Japan took 116,383 tonnes of grain-fed beef while South Korea took 31,020 tonnes.

But China's take increased fivefold, to 20,531 tonnes of grain-fed product, the EU took 11,502 tonnes and the Middle East 10,443 tonnes, to round out Australia's major customer base for grain-fed beef.

Have your say

Skip to:
Read comments
Add comments

Add your comment on this story

Comments Form

1200 characters left

Your details
Post Options

Our Privacy Policy includes important information about our collection, use and disclosure of your personal information (including to provide you with targeted advertising based on your online activities). It explains that if you do not provide us with information we have requested from you, we may not be able to provide you with the goods and services you require. It also explains how you can access or seek correction of your personal information, how you can complain about a breach of the Australian Privacy Principles and how we will deal with a complaint of that nature.

Comments on this story

  • Wazza of Western District Posted at 3:54 PM February 20, 2014

    And its a pity producers are still getting similar prices to two decades ago ,but cost are sky rocketing ,I cant wait to get out of beef production as the income V costs squeeze is relentless.

CSG inquiry ‘under-resourced’

CSG inquiry ‘under-resourced’

A PARLIAMENTARY inquiry into unconventional onshore gas in Victoria is under-resourced, according to a draft report.

Summerfruit Australia joins NFF

Summerfruit Australia joins NFF

SUMMERFRUIT Australia is the latest organisation to join the National Farmers’ Federation ranks.

Boost for irrigators

Open irrigation channels on farm land and water wheel at Cohuna, Victoria on the Murray River 10 Apr 2002.

RAINFALL in North East Victoria has boosted irrigation allocations for the Murray catchment.

Upgraded milk plant opens

Fonterra Logo Standard Large

FONTERRA’S investment at the Cobden will boost the value of southwest dairy products, says a local leader.

Join us on Day of Dairy 2015

Milk Quality Awards

HELP us make our Day of Dairy on Thursday, September 10, a day to remember.

Going south

CHINA will turn to South America if Australia backs away from a landmark trade agreement, it’s believed.

Oscar makes AFL debut

McDonald brothers

CHARAM’S Oscar McDonald made his AFL debut on Sunday for the Demons against Fremantle.

Bull sales charge up

Dunoon Angus sale Holbrook

MONTHS of stellar beef returns are being reflected in millions of dollars spent on bulls in the past week.

Major brands join demonstration

Major brands join demonstration

SOUTHERN Farming Systems is holding a boom spray demonstration day.

Keeping farmers posted

Supplied Editorial

OUTBACK postie Dave Hammond has a mail run so long it is a tourist attraction.

El Nino cycle not all doom

Generic Cracked dry earth , mud, dirt, in a empty dry dam floor also with a dried jaw bone from a skull , on a drought declar...

A STRONG El Nino weather pattern isn’t all doom for Australian farmers, according to climate experts.