Livestock Marketing Information Center

Current Situation and Analysis
Last Updated: 2/8/2016
U.S. CATTLE INVENTORY INCREASES

USDA-NASS reported a January 1, 2016 cattle inventory in-line with expectations in terms of year-over-year percentage growth.  The nation’s total cattle and calf inventory stood at 92 million head, up 3.2% year-over-year and the largest since 2011’s.  The beef cowherd grew by 3.5%, exceeding 30 million head for the first count since January 1, 2012.  Heifers being held for breeding purposes were up 3.3% from a year ago, a nearly 200,000 head rise from the large count of a year earlier.  A larger calf crop was produced in 2015, up 780,000 head or 2.3% above 2014’s and the biggest since 2011


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SHEEP INVENTORY UP SLIGHTLY

The January 1st, 2016 Sheep Inventory published by USDA-NASS, said the national inventory of all sheep and lambs increased by less than 1% compared to 2015’s.  This was an increase of 40,000 head total, and made for the second year in a row of inventory upticks.  The last time the sheep industry experienced inventory increases two years in a row was in 2005 and 2006, and before that it had not happened since 1987 and 1988. 


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DAIRY MARKET AND INVENTORY UPDATE

According to the Foreign Ag Service (FAS), world cow milk production increased by 1.4% in 2015 compared to 2014’s.  Out of the 16 select countries on the report, only four had year-over-year decreases in milk output (South Korea, New Zealand, Russia, and Ukraine).  FAS forecasts that world milk production will post a 1.5% annual gain in 2016.  International prices from Oceania and Western Europe (published by USDA-AMS) have and continue to post significantly below year ago and average prices.  Exports of US dairy products were soft during 2015, especially for whey and butter.  China (the s


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