The supply of export grade cattle at saleyards across Australia for the first two weeks of November has fallen considerably year-on-year, according to Meat and Livestock Australia.
MLA says the drop in numbers can be partly attributed to the lack of demand and previous dry years, encouraging early offloads and resulting in a shortfall.
Recent scattered showers across NSW and Queensland has also encouraged producers to hold on to cattle.
Physical markets have registered a 17 per cent fall in grown steer throughput for the first two weeks of November year-on-year.
MLA says producers have been encouraged to hold onto their grown steers, or to turn them off earlier in the year as young cattle.
This has largely resulted in a lack of export demand and subdued prices – due to recessions and the high Aussie dollar.
As a result, MLA says export markets have been suffering, and processors are feeling the heat from the reduced demand and supply.
Consequently, processors have bought 18pc less grown steers compared with the same period last year, and the national Japan ox indicator has fallen 9pc year-on-year, to settle at 160¢/kg (live).
Increased turnoff of cattle throughout previous months, due to deteriorating seasons has also resulted in a shortfall in numbers towards the end of spring.
The competitive live export market has also managed to capture significant grown steer numbers, especially throughout Queensland, which has consequently reduced numbers in physical markets.
The the lack of international demand and high A$ have largely outweighed the impact of the tighter supply.
MLA reports that cow supply has also fallen 20pc on last year, with a 25pc drop in numbers to processors and an 10% fall in the number of dairy cows to market.
Export demand has waned and prices have fallen 13pc, to 117¢/kg year-on-year, encouraging producers to hold on.
Good rainfall in Victoria in recent months has also encouraged dairy farmers to hold onto cows.
Resilient demand for cows in the beginning of the year, as consumers moved towards manufactured beef coincided with dry seasons, and encouraged large numbers onto the market.
Like grown steers, cow supply is experiencing a shortfall in throughput.
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