With a plateau in U.S. cattle numbers and strong beef demand ahead, CattleFax says prices are likely to be stronger in the year ahead as consumers at home and abroad support industry profitability. 

That’s one of the big takeaways from the CattleFax outlook session in San Antonio, Texas. 

Kevin Good, CattleFax Vice President of Industry Relations and Analysis, says trade will play a significant role in beef and cattle markets. 

He expects higher total animal protein production will be offset by strong demand and increasing exports. 

“With strong demand for U.S. beef at home and rising demand overseas, the modest increases in supply will be more than offset by growing consumer appetite for our product,” Good says. 

CattleFax is projecting composite cutout prices will rise $3 during the upcoming year to reach $222 per hundredweight. 

Good also says CattleFax is projecting fed steer prices to average $120 per hundredweight during 2020, an increase of $3 from the previous year. 

Calf prices are also expected to move higher in the year ahead. CattleFax CEO Randy Blach predicts a lot less volatility in the market during 2020 than compared to last year.