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Beef Marketing and Economics

All Beef Marketing and Economics Content

A rancher and RMA agent reviewing insurance paperwork beside a off-road vehicle.

Livestock Risk Protection for Cattle

Price rallies, general price volatility and concern that prices may move lower could lead producers to insure livestock prices. Livestock Risk Protection (LRP) is an insurance program that covers the single peril or risk of lower prices on fed cattle and feeder cattle.

Six black cattle grazing a field with patches of snow.

Considerations for Cull Cows

The last year was difficult to say the least, from a wet, muddy spring and late planting to an early, wet fall and difficult harvest. Unfortunately, for cow calf producers, the repercussions were seen during pregnancy detection this year, as the number of slaughter cows within the state were abundant due to open cows.

Corn earlobe being stored in a bunker for later use as cattle feed.

Valuing High-Moisture Corn and Earlage

A key advantage to using commodities that meet standard specifications and are frequently traded is that it is very easy to establish an economic value that is accepted by most users. The marketplace sets the value of corn, and other feedstuffs on a daily basis, provided those products meet some set of standard specifications.

various white charts and bar graphs on a blue background

Monthly Cattle Prices and Basis Levels

Effective marketing and risk management techniques often rely on sound benchmarks. Those marketing cattle need reasonable metrics to evaluate received and expected prices.

Herd of mixed cattle grazing in a vast, open range. Courtesy: U.S. Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management

Census of Agriculture Cattle Insights

The "2017 Census of Agriculture" is a valuable source for insights related to cattle operations at the state level. There were 13,928 operations across South Dakota with cattle in 2017, and the total inventory was 3,988,183 head.

a creep feeder unit in a pasture. Photo by Alice Welch, USDA

Considering Creep Feeding

Despite what Mother Nature seems to think the summer months are approaching and for some that means rolling out the creep feeder and for others considering whether creep feeding is a necessary investment.

 several cattlemen on horseback moving a herd of cattle at pasture

Cow Share Agreements

Getting started in the cattle business can be tricky for beginning cattlemen due to the amount of capital investment needed upfront.

stack of coins with faded chart lines showing in the foreground

Beef Cattle Budgets

Beef Cattle Budgets can be used to estimate revenues and costs associated with six different beef cattle enterprises.

stack of coins with faded chart lines showing in the foreground

Move the Cows or Move the Feed

This calculator is designed to aid producers making the decision to buy feedstuffs and haul the feed to the operation, or to haul the cattle to the feedstuffs.

herd of beef cattle grazing in a pasture

Beef

Home to more than 1 million head of cattle, South Dakota’s producers can rely on SDSU Extension for research-based information, best management practices and resources to support healthy and profitable herds.