February 14th, 2017

There have been some very good questions over the last couple of weeks on the market as we move into spring. I’m sure there will be more to come, and I encourage you to ask. Others will get a lot of benefit from your questions also.

Will we have a market for program cattle in the spring and summer?

It is too early to know just what value is going to be placed on NHTC cattle in the spring. Those cattle typically go to the European Union, and in the past they have paid up to $20/cwt premium for those cattle when they are fat. We are on top of the demand for those cattle every week and will keep you up to date as they develop.

Do I need to get my cattle aged and sourced by an independent party now?

You don’t need to pay to have your cattle aged and sourced by a third party at this time. However, you should tag your cattle with EID tags and give the right vaccinations. That way, if those markets develop a couple of weeks before you sell we can spend the money if it looks like there is real value there.

Will tagging my calves pay?

The answer to this question is absolutely. The tag itself has become a symbol of quality to the buyers. Because it has been a requirement to vaccinate in order to get the tags, these calves don’t show up as dead for the buyers later on at their feed lots or grass ranches. They come back to buy this sign of quality again and again. Also remember if you want to sell in one of the value added programs they will need EID tags.

What vaccination program do you think is best?

Because we have been selling into value added programs for several years we get information back on these cattle that helps us let you know which vaccinations work and how to use them. I am only going to list the very best one because we know it works. It is important to know there has been success in other programs also, but we know the program we recommend works every time.

First, read the label and follow the instructions on the amount to use and where to give it to the letter. Give the shots at least 6 inches apart. If you give 3 shots use both sides of the neck. Keep the vaccines in a cool box and don’t mix until you are ready to use them. Keep different vaccines in different locations at the branding so they don’t get mixed accidentally. It is best to put someone in charge of your vaccinations that understands the necessity of doing it right. Today, vaccinations are a critical part of marketing your cattle. We recommend Vista Once, an 8 way, and Multi Min at branding. We also recommend boosters at least 2 weeks before shipping your calves to sell. Boost with Vista Once and an 8 way, and if you have a good loose mineral program for your cows then this program really works.

There have been some questions on the market on cows and bulls. We expect that market to pick up next month. However, I think cows will be short all spring. With the new plant that is opening in Idaho processing 1700 cows and bulls a day, there will be a big player in this market starting around May.

The run is still too short to get a good feel, but we called things steady for sure.


I’ll see you next week,

Jim (831) 320-3698

Small Animal Recap
Low Price/Hd High Price/Hd
Doe $35 $200
Billy $75 $275
Wether Goat $30 $175
Goat Family $160 $210
Ewe $100 $210
Sheep Family $85 $185