The fire and shutdown of the Tyson plant at Holcomb, Kansas has sent the cattle market lower. That includes limit losses in both the live and feeder cattle futures trade last week. While the price paid to cattle producers has dropped, packer margins have rocketed higher. During the week ending August 17, the Sterling Beef Profit Tracker said packer margins topped $358 per head. That’s up nearly $170 from the previous week. There are indications the packer margins were over $700 per head this past week. The North Dakota Stockmen’s Association has briefed the state’s congressional delegation and USDA officials about the “seriousness of this situation.”
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