About 1,285 head of cattle were moved through the Stratton sales yard Saturday, with many steers selling in the $0.90-$1.10/lb range.
But the buyers were picky this year, and not every steer was able to fetch such a high price.
“The general feeling was where the quality was, the price was,” noted Ralph Hunsperger, president of the Rainy River Cattlemen’s Association.
“Pasture left a lot to be desired this year so we had some plain cattle,” he added, which received a plain price.
Some of the more plain cattle barely got a bid of 50 cents a pound while good yearlings were getting close to $1.10/lb.
Sales yard manager Russel Richards said the prices were good although they had come down some in the last month. Hunsperger agreed, noting beef prices in Winnipeg peaked about a month ago.
“Some of those cattle would have got more per pound last month," he admitted. "But they would have had a month’s less growth on them, too.”
Buyers came in from Saskatchewan to southern Ontario, with a good number of the cattle bought in Stratton shipped out of province.
“About two-thirds of them animals were sold to a Saskatchewan buyer," Hunsperger said. ”[Buyers] were very weight selective, between 800-900 pounds.
“We had a good sale," he added. "We’re happy with the way things are going. There’s a niche we serve here.”
Eyes already are turning to the next fall sale Oct. 6. Although many producers unloaded their cattle early this year because of the dry weather, Hunsperger is still expecting a good sale.
“I think we’re going to have at least as many cattle," he said. "People are starting to move calves. [Cattle] are still out there.”