Alabama, national beef industry update presented in Enterprise

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Where is the beef, and how is the industry faring these days? An AgriBusiness Now breakfast was held in Enterprise on August 12, 2016, answering those questions.

Alabama Farmers Federation Director Nathan Jaeger gave the presentation, discussing high prices the last few years in the beef cattle business and how those high prices are starting to come back down.

“In a commodity market, that’s what you can expect is that what goes up, must come down, and the important thing farmers need to remember is ‘how do we manage our cattle in a down market, as well as an up market?” said Jaeger.

He said the commodities vary between luxury and staple, from “hamburger helper to filet mignon. They discussed marketing cattle, adding value to them and managing risks, something those working in the industry have said they can put to good use.

“It’s just right now one of those things right now you don’t know what’s happening, the way the market’s moving. We’re just trying to offer our service and do the best thing we can for our customers,” said Chris King, co-owner of the Coffee County Stockyard.

“What I take from all of it is, if you can precondition your cattle, cut them, make your bull calves, your steers, and just take care of them, you’re going to have more in return at the end of the day,” said his wife and co-owner Amanda King.

“So what does this mean for the consumer?” asked Jaeger. “What we’re looking at is still a very good, steady supply of beef in the grocery stores, and what we’re going to see is that there’s a little bit more beef on the market.”

But does this mean the price you pay at the store will come back down? He said expect those prices to stay about the same. Jaeger also said there is a lot of optimism nationwide when it comes to beef. Farmers received some good tips and consumers can marinate on what he said is a fairly steady market.

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