Cattle on Feed
Cattle on Feed

ISSN: 1948-9080

Released December 18, 2020, by the National Agricultural Statistics Service 
(NASS), Agricultural Statistics Board, United States Department of 
Agriculture (USDA).

United States Cattle on Feed Up Slightly
	
Cattle and calves on feed for the slaughter market in the United States for 
feedlots with capacity of 1,000 or more head totaled 12.0 million head on 
December 1, 2020. The inventory was slightly above December 1, 2019.

Placements in feedlots during November totaled 1.91 million head, 9 percent 
below 2019. Net placements were
1.85 million head. During November, placements of cattle and calves weighing 
less than 600 pounds were 520,000 head, 
600-699 pounds were 460,000 head, 700-799 pounds were 400,000 head, 800-899 
pounds were 306,000 head, 
900-999 pounds were 130,000 head, and 1,000 pounds and greater were 90,000 
head.

Marketings of fed cattle during November totaled 1.78 million head, 2 percent 
below 2019.

Other disappearance totaled 61,000 head during November, 6 percent below 
2019.

Cattle on Feed Inventory, Placements, Marketings, and Other Disappearance on
1,000+ Capacity Feedlots - United States: December 1, 2019 and 2020
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        :             :             :  Percent of  
                  Item                  :    2019     :    2020     :previous year 
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        :   ---- 1,000 head ----        percent    
                                        :                                          
On feed November 1 .....................:   11,816        11,973          101      
Placed on feed during November .........:    2,093         1,906           91      
Fed cattle marketed during November ....:    1,813         1,782           98      
Other disappearance during November ....:       65            61           94      
On feed December 1 .....................:   12,031        12,036          100      
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cattle on Feed Inventory, Placements, Marketings, and Other Disappearance on
1,000+ Capacity Feedlots - United States: November 1, 2019 and 2020
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        :             :             :  Percent of  
                  Item                  :    2019     :    2020     :previous year 
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        :   ---- 1,000 head ----        percent    
                                        :                                          
On feed October 1 ......................:   11,288        11,717          104      
Placed on feed during October ..........:    2,462         2,192           89      
Fed cattle marketed during October .....:    1,875         1,873          100      
Other disappearance during October .....:       59            63          107      
On feed November 1 .....................:   11,816        11,973          101      
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cattle on Feed Inventory on 1,000+ Capacity Feedlots by Month - States and United States:
2019 and 2020
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  :                 :                 :              December 1, 2020              
                  :                 :                 :--------------------------------------------
       State      :December 1, 2019 :November 1, 2020 :              :  Percent of  :  Percent of  
                  :                 :                 :  Inventory   :previous year :previous month
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  :     --------------- 1,000 head --------------          ----- percent ----      
                  :                                                                                
Arizona ..........:        256               258              256          100             99      
California .......:        550               555              555          101            100      
Colorado .........:      1,100             1,120            1,130          103            101      
Idaho ............:        300               280              290           97            104      
Iowa .............:        690               620              610           88             98      
Kansas ...........:      2,430             2,520            2,500          103             99      
Minnesota ........:        140               125              125           89            100      
Nebraska .........:      2,480             2,500            2,530          102            101      
Oklahoma .........:        325               320              325          100            102      
South Dakota .....:        250               225              250          100            111      
Texas ............:      2,930             2,910            2,900           99            100      
Washington .......:        240               245              255          106            104      
                  :                                                                                
Other States .....:        340               295              310           91            105      
                  :                                                                                
United States ....:     12,031            11,973           12,036          100            101      
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cattle Placed on Feed on 1,000+ Capacity Feedlots by Month - States and United States:
2019 and 2020
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  :              :              :            During November 2020            
                  :    During    :    During    :--------------------------------------------
       State      :November 2019 : October 2020 :              :  Percent of  :  Percent of  
                  :              :              :  Placements  :previous year :previous month
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  :    ------------ 1,000 head -----------           ----- percent ----      
                  :                                                                          
Arizona ..........:       27             27             22            81             81      
California .......:       64             66             58            91             88      
Colorado .........:      185            175            165            89             94      
Idaho ............:       56             53             50            89             94      
Iowa .............:      110            105             83            75             79      
Kansas ...........:      415            430            415           100             97      
Minnesota ........:       25             35             16            64             46      
Nebraska .........:      520            560            460            88             82      
Oklahoma .........:       58             51             52            90            102      
South Dakota .....:       75             84             79           105             94      
Texas ............:      465            480            405            87             84      
Washington .......:       42             61             45           107             74      
                  :                                                                          
Other States .....:       51             65             56           110             86      
                  :                                                                          
United States ....:    2,093          2,192          1,906            91             87      
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cattle Placed on Feed by Weight Group on 1,000+ Capacity Feedlots and Month - States and United States: 2019 and 2020
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
               :                                                 During November 2019                                                  
               :-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     State     :Under 600 lbs : 600-699 lbs  : 700-799 lbs  : 800-899 lbs  : 900+ lbs 1/  : 900-999 lbs  :  1,000+ lbs  :    Total     
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
               :  1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head  
               :                                                                                                                       
Colorado ......:      60             40             30             30             25            (D)            (D)             185     
Kansas ........:      60            105            125             80             45            (D)            (D)             415     
Nebraska ......:     100            120            100             90            110            (D)            (D)             520     
Texas .........:     200            120             85             45             15            (D)            (D)             465     
               :                                                                                                                       
Other States ..:     200            115             83             65             45            (D)            (D)             508     
               :                                                                                                                       
United States .:     620            500            423            310            (X)            130            110           2,093     

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
               :                                                  During October 2020                                                  
               :-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     State     :Under 600 lbs : 600-699 lbs  : 700-799 lbs  : 800-899 lbs  : 900+ lbs 1/  : 900-999 lbs  :  1,000+ lbs  :    Total     
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
               :  1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head  
               :                                                                                                                       
Colorado ......:      35             30             35             40             35            (D)            (D)             175     
Kansas ........:      65             90            140             90             45            (D)            (D)             430     
Nebraska ......:     120            125             90            110            115            (D)            (D)             560     
Texas .........:     170            125            115             55             15            (D)            (D)             480     
               :                                                                                                                       
Other States ..:     180            125             85             92             65            (D)            (D)             547     
               :                                                                                                                       
United States .:     570            495            465            387            (X)            185             90           2,192     

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
               :                                                 During November 2020                                                  
               :-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     State     :Under 600 lbs : 600-699 lbs  : 700-799 lbs  : 800-899 lbs  : 900+ lbs 1/  : 900-999 lbs  :  1,000+ lbs  :    Total     
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
               :  1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head     1,000 head  
               :                                                                                                                       
Colorado ......:      50             35             30             30             20            (D)            (D)             165     
Kansas ........:      60            100            125             85             45            (D)            (D)             415     
Nebraska ......:      80            110             90             85             95            (D)            (D)             460     
Texas .........:     150            115             80             45             15            (D)            (D)             405     
               :                                                                                                                       
Other States ..:     180            100             75             61             45            (D)            (D)             461     
               :                                                                                                                       
United States .:     520            460            400            306            (X)            130             90           1,906     
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(D) Withheld to avoid disclosing data for individual operations.                                                                       
(X) Not applicable.                                                                                                                    
1/  The 900 pounds and greater weight group is the sum of 900-999 pounds and 1,000 pounds and greater weight groups.                   

Cattle Marketed on 1,000+ Capacity Feedlots by Month - States and United States:
2019 and 2020
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  :              :              :            During November 2020            
                  :    During    :    During    :--------------------------------------------
       State      :November 2019 : October 2020 :              :  Percent of  :  Percent of  
                  :              :              :  Marketings  :previous year :previous month
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  :    ------------ 1,000 head -----------           ----- percent ----      
                  :                                                                          
Arizona ..........:       26             25             23            88             92      
California .......:       47             49             51           109            104      
Colorado .........:      150            160            150           100             94      
Idaho ............:       44             41             39            89             95      
Iowa .............:       76             92             91           120             99      
Kansas ...........:      395            440            425           108             97      
Minnesota ........:       14             14             15           107            107      
Nebraska .........:      475            460            415            87             90      
Oklahoma .........:       57             45             46            81            102      
South Dakota .....:       64             48             53            83            110      
Texas ............:      390            420            400           103             95      
Washington .......:       35             35             34            97             97      
                  :                                                                          
Other States .....:       40             44             40           100             91      
                  :                                                                          
United States ....:    1,813          1,873          1,782            98             95      
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cattle Other Disappearance on 1,000+ Capacity Feedlots by Month - States and United States:
2019 and 2020
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  :              :              :            During November 2020            
                  :    During    :    During    :--------------------------------------------
       State      :November 2019 : October 2020 :    Other     :  Percent of  :  Percent of  
                  :              :              :disappearance :previous year :previous month
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  :      ---------- 1,000 head ----------            ----- percent ----      
                  :                                                                          
Arizona ..........:       1              1              1            100            100      
California .......:       7              7              7            100            100      
Colorado .........:       5              5              5            100            100      
Idaho ............:       2              2              1             50             50      
Iowa .............:       4              3              2             50             67      
Kansas ...........:      10             10             10            100            100      
Minnesota ........:       1              1              1            100            100      
Nebraska .........:      15             10             15            100            150      
Oklahoma .........:       1              1              1            100            100      
South Dakota .....:       1              1              1            100            100      
Texas ............:      15             20             15            100             75      
Washington .......:       2              1              1             50            100      
                  :                                                                          
Other States .....:       1              1              1            100            100      
                  :                                                                          
United States ....:      65             63             61             94             97      
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Terms and Definitions of Cattle on Feed Estimates

Cattle on feed are steers and heifers being fed a ration of grain, silage, 
hay and/or protein supplement for slaughter market that are expected to 
produce a carcass that will grade select or better. It excludes cattle being 
"backgrounded only" for later sale as feeders or later placement in another 
feedlot.

Placements are steers and heifers put into a feedlot, fed a ration which will 
produce a carcass that will grade select or better, and are intended for the 
slaughter market.

Marketings are steers and heifers shipped out of feedlots to a slaughter 
market.

Other disappearance includes death loss, movement from feedlots to pasture, 
and shipments to other feedlots for further feeding.

Statistical Methodology

Survey Procedures: During January and July all known feedlots in the United 
States with capacity of 1,000 or more head are surveyed to provide data for 
cattle on feed estimates. During the other months, all known feedlots from 16 
States are surveyed. The 16 States account for approximately 98 percent of 
the cattle on feed in feedlots with capacity of 1,000 or more head. 
Individual State estimates are published monthly for 12 of the 16 States. 
Data collected from the remaining 4 States are used to establish the "Other 
States" estimates. These 4 States include Illinois, New Mexico, Oregon, and 
Wyoming. The "Other States" category represents all cattle on feed with a 
capacity of 1,000 or more head for the rest of the United States.

Estimating Procedures: These cattle on feed estimates were prepared by the 
Agricultural Statistics Board after reviewing recommendations and analysis 
submitted by Regional Field Offices. Regional and State survey data were 
reviewed for reasonableness with each other and with estimates from the 
previous month when establishing the current estimates.

Revision Policy: Revisions to previous estimates are made to improve month to 
month relationships. Estimates for the previous month are subject to revision 
in all States each month when current estimates are made. In February, all 
monthly estimates for the previous year, and the number of feedlots and 
annual marketings from two years ago are reviewed and subject to revisions. 
The reviews are primarily based on slaughter data, state check-off or brand 
data, and any other data that may have been received after the original 
estimate was made. Estimates will also be reviewed after data from the Census 
of Agriculture are available. No revisions will be made after that date and 
estimates become final.

Reliability: Since all 1,000+ capacity cattle on feed operators in every 
State are not included in the monthly survey, survey estimates are subject to 
sampling variability. Survey results are also subject to non-sampling errors 
such as omissions, duplications, and mistakes in reporting, recording, and 
processing the data. The effects of these errors cannot be measured directly. 
They are minimized through rigid quality controls in the data collection 
process and through a careful review of all reported data for consistency and 
reasonableness.
 
To assist users in evaluating the reliability of estimates in this report, 
the "Root Mean Square Error" is shown for selected items in the table on the 
following page. The "Root Mean Square Error" is a statistical measure based 
on past performance and is computed using the differences between first and 
latest estimates. The "Root Mean Square Error" for cattle on feed inventory 
estimates over the past 24 months is 0.1 percent. This means that chances are 
2 out of 3 that the final estimate will not be above or below the current 
estimate of 12.0 million head by more than 0.1 percent. Chances are 9 out of 
10 that the difference will not exceed 0.1 percent.

The table on the following page shows a 24 month record of the range of 
differences between first and latest estimates for selected items. Using 
estimates of number on feed as an example, changes between the first estimate 
and the latest estimate during the past 24 months have averaged 4,000 head, 
ranging from 0 to 15,000 head. During this period the initial estimate has 
been above the latest estimate 8 times and has been below the latest estimate 
2 times. This does not imply that the initial estimate is likely to 
understate or overstate final inventory.

Reliability of Monthly Cattle on Feed Estimates
[Based on data for the past 24 months]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                              :  Root mean   :  90 percent  :        Difference between first and latest estimate         
                              : square error :  confidence  :         :         :         :               :               
                              :              :    level     :-------------------------------------------------------------
             Item             :              :              :         :         :         :            Months             
                              :              :              :         :         :         :-------------------------------
                              :              :              : Average :Smallest : Largest : Below latest  : Above latest  
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                              :   percent        percent         ------- 1,000 -------            ----- number ----       
                              :                                                                                           
On feed ......................:     0.1            0.1           4         0        15            2               8       
                              :                                                                                           
Placements ...................:     0.3            0.5           3         0        15            6               3       
                              :                                                                                           
Marketings ...................:     0.2            0.4           1         0        15            1               1       
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Information Contacts

Listed below are the commodity specialists in the Livestock 
Branch of the National Agricultural Statistics Service to contact 
for additional information. E-mail inquiries may be sent to 
nass@usda.gov.

Travis Averill, Chief, Livestock Branch ......... (202) 692-0069

Scott Hollis, Head, Livestock Section ........... (202) 690-2424
   Sherry Bertramsen - Livestock Slaughter ...... (202) 690-8632
   Holly Brenize - Sheep and Goats .............. (202) 720-0585
   Ryan Cowen - Cattle, Cattle on Feed .......... (202) 720-3040
   Mike Miller - Milk Production and Milk Cows .. (202) 720-3278
   Suzanne Richards - Dairy Products ............ (202) 720-4448
   Seth Riggins - Hogs and Pigs ................. (202) 720-3106

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