He cattle price is at all-time highs, since there are records in the 1960s, in the futures market as a result of the extreme drought that affects the largest producers in the world, mainly the United States. Currently, there are two types of prices for this raw material, the one considered ‘fattening cattle’, which is euphemistically known as intensive, and a second type of cattle whose translation from English is ‘free’, but does not correspond to extensive livestock. , but with cattle that are between 600 and 800 pounds in weight and that will be sent later to the macrogranjas. In both cases, the price of cattle trades at levels never seen before, with a rise so far in 2023 of more than 30% and 11% in each case.
It is not the only raw material linked to food that has skyrocketed this year. The listing price of the orange or cocoa juice They are also at maximums, as a consequence of the drop in production not only due to the drought, but also because extreme events such as hurricanes or the ‘El Niño’ phenomenon (which generates an increase in temperatures worldwide) have reduced harvests and productions. To all this is added a context of inflation which has also raised costs for farmers and ranchers. It must be taken into account that The United States is the main producer of beef worldwide, ahead of Brazil, China and the European Union, in fourth place. Likewise, it is estimated that close to 25% of the entire territory of the United States is affected by different degrees of drought, although it is especially serious in the south of the country, where the largest large estates that provide shelter for livestock and agriculture extend. .
The drought causes not only subsistence difficulties for cattle, but primarily affects their food, since it reduces production and raises the price. This leads farmers to slaughter their animals earlier and in greater numbers to avoid losses. It is calculated, according to the financial publication MarketWatch, that in 2022 the number of heads of cattle in the country fell another 3%, to 89.3 billion throughout the country. It is the lowest figure since 2015, according to the biannual report published by the US Department of Agriculture until December.
Climate change is already fully entering the controversial field of listed raw materials linked to food. However, it remains to be seen if the message gets through among livestock professionals. In March of this year, California – one of the states with the highest water deficit in the entire country – said goodbye to three consecutive years of drought.
In the fall of 2022, the country came to have 40% of its continental territory in some stage of drought, and even so, different media, such as The Washington Post, publicly denounce the lack of awareness on the part of ranchers and farmers who continue to think that climate change is a lie. The Joe Biden Administration approved a $20 billion program to renovate and modernize farms and farms a year ago. The objective of this ambitious project is for technology to collaborate with workers to reduce the impact of climate change on their crops and livestock production, and it also aspires to ensure that inflation is not an obstacle to achieving this, that it does not interrupt the investments.