Hereford sale averages on the rise


KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The new year is off to an impressive start for the Hereford breed as results from auction rings across the country indicate Herefords are in demand.

Top prices. Purebred and commercial cattlemen are paying top prices for Hereford seedstock offered through production and consignment sales. The American Hereford Association reports an upward trend in bull sale averages as compared to the same time a year ago.

The sale season is well under way around the country, and sale averages are starting to tell a positive story.

The sales reported to the association from January through February show Hereford bulls have averaged $549 higher than last year. This upward trend shows healthy optimism for the 2004 spring sale season.

More good news. Adding to this optimism is the fact that many bull customers enjoyed one of the best, if not the best, fall sale season for their calves.

They also took advantage of the cow and bull market by cashing in some older cows and bulls. In comparing 2002 Hereford sale averages to the averages for 2003, the Hereford seedstock industry had a banner year.

In 2002, 4,550 bulls averaged $2,316 and 5,347 females averaged $1,875. The 2003 averages posted 4,553 bulls at $2,450 and 5,721 females at $2,100.

With these figures, Hereford bull sale averages were $134 higher in 2003 than the previous year and heifer sale averages are even more impressive with an increase of $225.

Top five. The top five Hereford bull sales offering 25 or more lots in 2003 included:

Cooper Hereford Ranch, Willow Creek, Mont., averaging $5,712;

Holden Herefords, Valier, Mont., averaging $3,817;

Dudley Bros., Comanche, Texas, averaging $3,561;

Courtney Herefords, St. Onge, S.D., averaging $3,486;

Debter Hereford, Horton, Ala., averaging $3,267.

Consignment sales. The top five 2003 Hereford bull consignment sales included:

Go-Pher the Purple, Hutchison, Minn., averaging $2,778;

Big Country Breeders Bull Sale, Columbus, Mont., averaging $2,426;

Illini Top Cut, Macomb, Ill., averaging $2,322;

Northwest Bull Sale, Caldwell, Idaho, averaging $2,262;

Black Hills Stock Show, Rapid City, S.D., averaging $2,233.

National winners. The top national Hereford consignment sales included Mile High Night, Denver, Colo., averaging $14,260 and Western Nugget, Reno, Nev., averaging $3,626.

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