October 22, 2008
Beef processors are over-reacting to general worries over the future strength of the economy, the National Beef Association (NBA) of the UK said.
Although some downward pressure on slaughter cattle values was expected, many of the price cuts seen so far have already been too severe, the association said.
Buyers are using the opportunity to take more off the farm gate price than market circumstances dictate, NBA director Kim Haywood said.
Some buyers are aware of the possibility that consumers may buy less premium cuts of beef but have taken a cautious approach when easing their own purchase prices, he said. They know that sharp drops in farm income risks triggering reductions in future cattle supplies.
However, others are more "short-sighted" and "self-interested" by slashing prices more than necessary, she said.