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Wednesday January 17, 2018

Continued expected drought in the Southern Plains threatens to make those already tight beef supplies even tighter.

The latest estimates for the final size of the 2010 U.S. crop of cattle available for slaughter puts supplies at their lowest point since 1950. Worse still, supplies are expected to continue falling for the next three years. Now, adding insult to injury, severe drought throughout the Southern Plains -- the source of 25 percent of the nation's cow slaughter today -- threatens to accelerate the drain on cattle supplies.

Analysts now expect the supply of cattle available to go into feedlots, the final phase of growth before harvest, won't start to increase until 2015; beef, until 2016.

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