Beef Cattle Numbers Predicted to Fall

NEW ZEALAND - With lamb numbers falling as more sheep farmers convert to dairying, meat companies are facing the prospect of their beef supplies taking a hit as well, with a significant drop in the number of calves that will be raised for beef.
calendar icon 17 September 2007
clock icon 1 minute read
Dairy demand taking a slice out of the beef industry.

That's due to a surge in demand for dairy cows to stock newly-converted dairy farms. Prices are double those of a year ago.

Farmers are opting to rear heifer calves for future milking cows instead of bull calves for the beef trade.

As a result , a lot more young bull calves are being sent straight to the works to process for the veal trade.

AFFCO meat company's livestock manager, Athol Murray, predicts that's going to put a serious dent in beef cattle supplies in two years. He says the supply of bull beef is going to be reduced by up to 150,000 animals in a couple of years.

Source: Radio New Zealand

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