More cattle than expected were placed on feed in September, which could result in tight beef supplies next year.

Ron Plain, Extension livestock marketing economist at the University of Missouri, says most analysts expected placements to be down 3.5%. But, placements were up slightly, according to this past week’s USDA’s Cattle on Feed Report.

“All of the increase came with calves weighing less than 600 lbs.,” he says. “There was about a 33% increase in calves being placed at those weights, and it will be a long time before those calves go to market.”

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