- MLA now expect 2022 annual cattle slaughter to come in 8.2% lower than their projections earlier this year, dropping from 6.70 million head to 6.15 million head.
- MLA are forecasting the Australian cattle herd at 27.58 million head by the end of this year, a lift of 1.4% on their February estimate of 27.21 million head.
- By 2024 MLA are projecting the cattle herd back to nearly 29 million head,
Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) released their June update to the cattle market projections last week and have pared back their estimates from their February 2022 report for annual cattle slaughter volumes. Citing supply and processing issues the 2022 annual slaughter levels are now expected to come in 8.2% lower than their projections earlier in the year dropping from 6.70 million head to 6.15 million head.
Looking further out, the 2023 and 2024 slaughter volumes have been cut back too with a drop noted in forecasts of 5.8% and 5.7%, respectively. MLA now expect cattle slaughter in 2023 to reach 6.85 million head instead of the 7.27 million head originally slated in the February estimates. In 2024, cattle slaughter is now projected to be 7.4 million head rather than the 7.9 million head anticipated earlier in the season.
The reduced slaughter estimates point to a quicker herd rebuild expected from MLA. An upward revision in the 2022 herd was noted in the June 2022 projections. MLA are forecasting the herd at 27.58 million head by the end of this year, a lift of 1.4% on their February estimate of 27.21 million head. The pace of the herd increase is quickening too for 2023 with MLA adding another 2.7% increase on top of the 27.93 million head originally forecast in their February outlook. The expectation now is for the 2023 herd to reach 28.7 million head.
Similarly, an added 2.3% has been placed on the 2024 herd forecast figures. In February MLA had the 2024 pegged at 28.26 million head and now expect it to be 28.9 million head. This will be the highest the herd has been since 2014.