GFM Network News


Klassen: Feeder cattle market searching for direction

Feedlots expecting barley prices to drop

Western Canadian feeder cattle prices continue to trade in a sideways pattern. Compared to last week, prices were quoted $2-$3 on either side of unchanged. Most auction barns were on holidays last week and arenas that did hold sales experienced limited volumes. Therefore, the market was hard to define. U.S. feeder cattle markets were steady […] Read more

U.S. meatpacking workers often absent after plants ordered to reopen

"There's still so many risks"

Chicago/Washington | Reuters — Smithfield Foods is missing about a third of its employees at a South Dakota pork plant because they are quarantined or afraid to return to work after a severe coronavirus outbreak, according to the workers’ union. Tyson Foods was forced to briefly close its Storm Lake, Iowa plant — a month […] Read more


Trump asks U.S. Justice Department to look into meat price disparities

Washington | Reuters — U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he had urged the Justice Department to look into allegations that the meatpacking industry broke antitrust law because the price that slaughterhouses pay farmers for animals had dropped even as meat prices rose. “I’ve asked the Justice Department to look into it. … I’ve […] Read more

U.S. senators scrutinize meat packers’ profits during pandemic

Chicago | Reuters — U.S. senators are calling for investigations of record profit margins for beef processors such as Tyson Foods and Cargill, after ranchers complained surging meat prices due to coronavirus hoarding did not translate into higher cattle prices. Futures prices for cattle have tumbled during the outbreak, worrying farmers as the U.S. economy […] Read more


U.S. livestock: Cattle limit up on beef demand, strong packer margins

Cash hog prices up, pork cutout down

Chicago | Reuters — U.S. live cattle futures settled up their expanded daily limit on Tuesday as traders continued to react to soaring profit margins for beef packers that should lift prices in the cash cattle market this week. Retail demand for meat has surged as fears of the COVID-19 coronavirus prompt consumers to stock […] Read more

As meat demand rises, processors raise pay for farmers, workers

Chicago | Reuters –– North American meat processors said on Monday they would pay extra money to farmers and slaughterhouse workers as the companies scramble to meet surging demand from consumers unnerved by the spread of the new coronavirus. Companies such as Tyson Foods and Cargill want to ensure their slaughterhouses remain supplied with cattle […] Read more


Meat packing sector needs federal inspectors

Shared staff, recalling recent retirees among options on table

The federal government is working on ways it can maintain inspection staffing levels at federally-licensed meat packing plants. Speaking to media Saturday in Ottawa, Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau addressed concerns surrounding the ability of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) to continue meat inspection work. The Reuters news service on Monday quoted two unnamed sources […] Read more



U.S. under pressure to keep slaughterhouses open

Chicago | Reuters — The U.S. Department of Agriculture is seeking to reassure meat producers it will keep slaughterhouses staffed with federal inspectors as fears about potential shutdowns due to the COVID-19 coronavirus hammer livestock prices and fuel concerns about food supplies, meat industry groups said on Monday. Livestock markets have been hit hard as […] Read more