beef cows and calves steve everts/iStock/Thinkstock

LIVESTOCK MARKETS: Cattle industry expansion waning

Heifer retention declining, while 2017 calf crop is larger year over year.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture released two key cattle reports last week that show that, although expansion continues, it is decelerating.

The July “Cattle” inventory report revealed a 3% year-over-year increase in the calf crop to 36.3 million head, which was also 6% larger than 2015. An estimated 26.5 million head of calves were born during the first half of 2017, which is a 4% increase from the first half of 2016 and 8% above 2015. An additional 9.80 million calves

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