Nevil Speer

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Nevil Speer has extensive experience and involvement with the livestock and food industry including various service and consultation projects spanning such issues as market competition, business and economic implications of agroterrorism, animal identification, assessment of price risk and market volatility on the producer segment, and usage of antibiotics in animal agriculture.
Dr. Speer writes about many aspects regarding agriculture and the food industry with regular contribution to BEEF and Feedstuffs.  He’s also written several influential industry white papers dealing with issues such as changing business dynamics in the beef complex, producer decision-making, and country-of-origin labeling.
He serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the National Institute for Animal Agriculture.
Dr. Speer holds both a PhD in Animal Science and a Master’s degree in Business Administration.

The views and opinions of the author expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of the TMX Group Limited and Natural Gas Exchange Inc.

Heavy in, heavy out: Heavyweight placements continue to worry the market 3
Placements of heavyweight feeder cattle in feedyards continues to worry the market.
Industry at a Glance: NAFTA beef trade and you; impact of Canada and Mexico 4
While feeder cattle imports have declined from both Canada and Mexico, beef imports have increased.
Industry at a Glance: What are the implications of feeder cattle imports? 4
Mexico has become increasingly competitive on the production side and now has much more capability to both feed and process cattle that traditionally might have made their way across the border. What are the implications for U.S. producers?
Why consumer sentiment matters
Despite economic headwinds, the beef industry has enjoyed solid gains during the past several years. Will that continue?
Whereto now, oh fickle cattle market?
Cattle feeders are fighting to get some equity back and buffer risk by becoming more reluctant purchasers of feeder cattle.
Do you vaccinate your calves against respiratory disease?
Feedyards will pay for convenience, and a set of unvaccinated, bawling calves is anything but convenient. Do you vaccinate against respiratory disease?
What’s the most popular time for calving season? 1
To make a dent in the spread of BVD, it’s important to have a defined calving season. How many cattle producers have one though?
Are you familiar with BVD?
BVD is a wreck if it gets into your cowherd. Surprisingly, however, some producers are not familiar with the disease.
What are the implications of the long-term trend in steer carcass weights? 4
Fed steer carcass weights have been trending higher for 35 years. What are the long-term implications?
March madness: Cattle market continues to keep beef producers confused
Supply continues to be a major influence on the market, only now it’s in the opposite direction compared to 2014 and the first half of 2015.
Beef demand vs. beef consumption: What’s the difference? 4
Beef consumption and demand reflect two very different things. Most importantly, declining consumption does not reflect declining demand. So what’s the difference?
Beef producers split on expansion plans 1
Cowherd expansion is well underway, with slightly more than half of producers surveyed by CattleFax saying they’ll get bigger this year.
What’s your cost to keep a cow? 1
Is there sufficient room in your operation to significantly adjust cost structure to accommodate lower markets?
March cattle markets: In like a lamb and out like a lion?
March may shape up to be an influential month from a number of perspectives in the cattle business.
Beef recaptures market share from pork and poultry 1
Beef is back in the saddle, and the shopping cart, after recapturing market share from pork and poultry. Can beef hold that position?
Beef demand vs. beef consumption: What’s the difference?
April 8, 2016

Dr. Tonsor, thank you for the clarification!

Herd expansion update: Is 2015 beef cow liquidation up or down?
January 1, 2016

Correct, there are fewer cows being harvested as a result of a smaller cow herd. However, what's represented above is the slaughter rate - hence, number of cows harvested as...

Feedyard vs. cow-calf inventory returns: Who fared best in 2015?
December 1, 2015

Dr. Odde:
Excellent observations - a cow/calf operation and a feedyard are indeed very different businesses - as such, there's some sense of comparing apples to oranges...

How long can cattle feeders fight the market?
October 14, 2015

Gross profit would equal revenue less cost-of-goods sold. in this instance, it reflects fed cattle revenue less purchased cost of feeder cattle. Net profit would then be...

Industry At A Glance: Branded Beef Sales
December 29, 2012

This is an excellent inquiry regarding the data. A couple of points of clarification might be helpful here. 1. The data is based on the comprehensive cutout detailing...

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