Knowledge Exchange

Ag Economy


  • 2017 average prices for Choice Steers came in at just over $121/cwt., slightly higher than 2016. 2018 prices are forecast at $115-117/cwt. However, many Northeast beef producers serve specialty markets and receive significantly higher prices than national averages.
  • Dairy cull cows have averaged $40-55/cwt. at auction depending on quality and grade. Bull calves are fetching extremely low prices, or even nothing, depending on the market.
  • 2018 beef production is expected to increase 1.8 percent over last year. However, beef exports are five percent above last year, helping to support domestic prices.
  • Most livestock product prices for 2018 are expected to average below prior year levels due to larger supply. Eggs are an exception, which should continue receiving relatively high prices, compared to 2017 lows.
  • Recreational equine markets are principally supported by local, recreational demand and nonfarm income, and have been tracking upward along with the general economy. Money and investments have been flowing into the industry.
  • Standardbred horse racing in N.Y. is quite stable. Not a lot of new entrants, but existing participants doing well. Thoroughbred sales kicked off with Saratoga in early August. Prices have been improving and continue to climb. Quality of N.Y.-bred horses continues to improve.