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The Forum > General Discussion > Can we continue to provide ourselves with affordable beef

Can we continue to provide ourselves with affordable beef

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You know, having been a self employed butcher, most of my life, I have seen first hand the fluctuations in meat prices, mostly driven by the value of our dollar, which in turn, drives exports.

Now exports are what determines our domestic meat prices, as essentially, we eat what we don't export.

Unfortunately this gets taken the wrong way as many think we export the best, and eat the rest, but that's simply not true.

Most cattle are sold as 'live weight' and, this price can fluctuate Week to week, month to month and so on.

I have seen cattle prices go from 200cents, back to as low as 49 cents in the space of ten months. (1995-6)

I am out of touch right now, but I think they are at about the 200 cent mark again.

So, farmers were getting this twenty years ago, which means thier cattle sold for the same dollars then, as they do today, yet their expenses have increased ten fold.

By rights our beef farmers should be getting around 350 cents by now, which would mean mince should sell for $20 kg and rump steak about $45.

Now assuming this trend continues, and it should, as Argintina and Brazil are the next generation of global beef suppliers, can our farmers continue to provide us with affordable meat, given that our export market is likely to contract over the next decade.

Now of you talk to any beef farmer today, expenses are the number one concern.
Posted by rehctub, Friday, 20 July 2012 6:25:33 AM
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Hi rehctub, canít wait to see what the vegans come up with in response?

I donít think the beef business is that much different to most commercial enterprises. All the same factors apply but some definitely have higher weighting for say beef production.

As we have seen recently with live exports, regulation can and does impact on markets, volume sales and pricing. Beef production however, cannot put market ready product back on the shelf as with say consumer hard goods.

This I suspect, is why input costs become even more critical for beef producers, the regulators screw your markets, your markets screw your margins and your margins get devoured by your non discretionary expenses.

The answer is to eat more bureaucratic regulators, sharks, whales, kangaroos, and polar bears. As for me, I just call my son in law and ask when I can get another half a beast off him?
Posted by spindoc, Friday, 20 July 2012 10:01:24 AM
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Spindoc says, "as for me, I just call my son in law and ask when I can get another half a beast off him?". Not for much longer spindoc.

The carbon tax will make running that freezer far too expensive for us mere mortals. The best Julia & the greens are going to leave us with will be an old Kalgoorlie meat safe, & that won't keep your meat very long.

I think the same formula works with most fresh food today Rehctub. When I was a kid it was usual for most families to spend about 30% of their income on basic foods.

The days of replacing the ute by selling 10 good bullocks are long gone. In the Maryborough, Bundaberg area I watch tens of thousands of acres going back from grazing country to garbage scrub 20/30 years ago.

The kids didn't want the farm, the farmer was getting too old to keep the regrowth at bay single handed, & the land could not produce enough income for him to pay for the work to be done.

The same thing was happening to the orchards. They could not compete with the imports, with our costs, & were getting bulldozed to save the cost of insecticides.

It's a strange world we live in today.
Posted by Hasbeen, Friday, 20 July 2012 11:10:56 AM
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hi clubman..we been over this before..but lets try again[things will soon be changing]..you sell meat..someone grows it..i eat it

how do i get your need to match my need
[my big limitation is meat is too nexpensive
and to eat it you need life living on it to die

there has to be a better way...and there is..but first start thinking

gods law id though shalt not murder
but murded meat tates SOOOOOO.good..surely if its good its of god

but it cant be..cause it violates law one[murder]

and vegans love this tell i tell them they murder thousands of LIVING seeds for their 'soy/milk'[yuck]..you know each LIVING seed had to die..!

[only god can give a seed life]

that the amason..is being made into desert JUST for soy[AT LEAST we meat eaters share the guilt[can 'pretend god is pleased by murdering 'kosha'[ITS NOT..its murder*]

this clearing of the amasion thing[cows next come there..and the vegans ommit the middle step between clearing for soy..to eventual further dradation..via meat[cattle]

so the cure is so attend our beasts
that the people KNOW..the beast is loved kept heathy..live its life as a cow..TILL THE SECOND IT DIES[then its meat]..proper kosha meat cause we didnt kill it..in fact loved it treasured it..till god says come..you have been only a cow upuntill now

now watch just as a beast become meat
recall the thomoas scripture..more blessed the lion who become man[by man eating him]KNOWING he lived the best lion life he could]..than the man b e blessed[vursed]..by lion eating man

but heck if meat is meat
i just want sorboline green
if its two buckks or less..and know the meat in it was suitable preserved..the second god said its time..[thou shalt not murder/nor adulterate gods law]serving other...[so god dont have to do it all]
Posted by one under god, Friday, 20 July 2012 11:38:05 AM
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Rechub, is the problem grain fed cattle ?
I don't see that we will be able to continue the fertilisation and
production of grain to feed to cattle to produce meat.
Seems to me that it is a rather inefficient way to produce meat.
It looks to be very energy dense way of doing it.

Is it not better to let the cattle roam the paddock and feed themselves ?
Posted by Bazz, Friday, 20 July 2012 4:08:13 PM
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We produce plenty, much more than we can eat.
So what is affordable? if we can not afford it maybe it is because others are willing to pay more.
Market forces.
Posted by Belly, Friday, 20 July 2012 4:14:19 PM
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