GFM Network News


COVID funds fuel consumer spending

Market Update with Jerry Klassen: The only recession with an increase in disposable income

During mid-February, Alberta packers were buying fed cattle on a live basis in the range of $150 to $150.50 FOB the feedlot; delivered prices on a dressed basis were quoted in the range of $254 to $255. The fed cattle market has been percolating higher over the past month. Beef production has exceeded earlier expectations […] Read more



Klassen: Feeder cattle demand surges

Cow-calf producers already thinking spring

Compared to last week, western Canadian yearlings sold $3-$5 higher while calves traded $6 to as much as $10 higher. The return of moderate temperatures enhanced buying enthusiasm across the Prairies. Strength in deferred live cattle futures appeared to offset strong feed grain values. Yearling prices were rather soft through January and the first half […] Read more

The number of cattle processed at Canadian and U.S. packing plants exceeded expectations from July through December 2020.

COVID impact may be easing by early summer

Market Update with Jerry Klassen: Life may not be quite back to normal, but beef markets might be

The beef and cattle markets continue to recover from the effects of the COVID pandemic. During the first quarter of 2020, beef demand was adjusting to higher unemployment levels as coronavirus spread throughout the U.S. and Canada. The problem was exacerbated when outbreaks of the virus among workers forced processing plants in Canada and the […] Read more


Klassen: Cold weather slows feeder cattle market activity

Compared to last week, western Canadian feeder cattle prices were relatively unchanged. Extreme temperatures blanketed Western Canada last week. Many auction barns cancelled sales or had limited numbers on offer. Buyers attended sales either in person or via the internet, which was supportive to the overall price structure. Many backgrounders and cow-calf producers delayed sales […] Read more



Cow-calfers and backgrounders should hold off

Market Update with Jerry Klassen: Keep lighter calves from the 2020 crop for as long as you can

Feed grain prices have been the largest factor influencing yearling and calf prices over the past couple of months. As of mid-January, feed barley was trading in the range of $275/mt to $285/mt delivered in the Lethbridge area while feedlots in the Red Deer region were making purchases from $265/mt to $272/mt delivered. Barley prices […] Read more

Klassen: Feeder market bounces on optimistic outlook

Feed barley remains near historical highs

Compared to last week, western Canadian yearling prices traded $2-$4 higher; prices for mid-weight calves were quoted $4-$8 above week-ago levels. Calves under 550 lbs. traded $6 to as much as $10 higher compared to seven days earlier. Improving feedlot margins were the main factor driving the feeder market. June and August live cattle futures […] Read more



Barley prices, and feed grains in general are expected to remain strong or high going into 2021, which can be a good or bad thing depending on which side of the feed bunk you are standing on.

Strong barley prices will continue in 2021

Market Update with Jerry Klassen: Weather-related impacts and greater demand are key factors

I’ve received many inquiries from cattle producers regarding the feed barley outlook for the remainder of the 2020-21 crop year. Barley prices have rallied nearly $80 per metric tonne (mt) from the harvest lows. There is an old saying among commodity traders that markets are understood looking backwards but have to be traded looking forward. […] Read more