Tough decisions are being made

University of Missouri Extension Beef Specialist Eric Bailey says it’s not an easy task for producers going through the drought to feed cattle efficiently right now. Grain isn’t cheap and neither is forage. 

“Grass hay is going for $85 per bale. If that bale is 1,000 pounds, that’s essentially $170 per ton, in the same ballpark as alfalfa.”

Bailey says moderate quality alfalfa is selling for $150 to $180 per ton. He tells Brownfield if producers haven’t started culling cattle, it is something they should consider.

“At least from what I’m hearing, it seems like producers are cutting back unproductive females. It doesn’t seem like producers are cutting back into foundation cattle yet, but I would suspect we’re not far from that happening.”

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