The feedlot cattle industry in Australia is facing a crisis, with
stocking rates at unprecedented lows. It is a disturbing situation according to
the recently-retired vice-president of the Australian Lot Feeders Association,
"The feedlot industry is now down to less than 50% capacity. There's a
capacity of 1.2 million head and the last survey has shown we are less than 50%
cattle on feed.
"The factors are very compounding. There's a high cost of
feeder cattle, high cost of grain and a poor result when you sell the stock into
the export market, so it's very challenging at the moment." Feedlots are usually
heavily-stocked as the cattle are hand-fed to fatten them before
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