The Rise in Beef Prices Since COVID-19

The Rise in Beef Prices Since COVID-19

In recent years, the beef industry has experienced unprecedented challenges, particularly in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Consumers across the globe have felt the pinch of rising beef prices, shown by beef futures prices up 133% since the COVID lows.

At Florida Premium Beef, we understand the concerns surrounding these elevated costs and believe it's essential to delve into the factors driving this surge in prices, including our unique approach to cattle farming.

The Economy Since COVID-19

The global economy was rocked by the emergence of COVID-19, leading to widespread disruptions across various industries, including agriculture. Lockdown measures, supply chain disruptions, labor shortages, and fluctuations in demand all contributed to the economic upheaval.Ā 

COVID-19 disrupted not only the cattle industry but virtually every market. Inflationary pressures compounded the situation, with prices rising across the board, especially in the beef sector.

Impact on Beef Prices

Amidst the turmoil, the question of why our prices are higher than grocers arises frequently. While our commitment to producing grass fed and grass finished premium beef undoubtedly influences our pricing, it's crucial to emphasize that we operate within an industry grappling with systemic challenges, including the unique risks associated with raising cattle to 28 months old and never administering antibiotics or hormones.Ā 

Additionally, the practice of grass feeding our animals, which results in them being approximately 200-400lbs lighter than grain-fed animals, significantly impacts our margins, showcasing the economic realities of sustainable farming practices versus profit-driven approaches.

The disruptions caused by COVID-19 rippled through every stage of the beef supply chain, from production, processing, and distribution. Processing plants, where cattle are slaughtered and processed into consumer-ready cuts, experienced temporary closures or reduced operating capacity to comply with health guidelines. This led to a bottleneck effect, restricting the flow of beef to market and reducing supply.

Even though Covid was years ago, we are still seeing the surge in prices due to the lingering impacts of disrupted supply chains, labor shortages, and increased input costs.

It's important we note how the rise in beef has affected beef cattle ranches in Florida. Even if big beef distribution chains are different from us, when there's a shift in prices in the market, it affects us homegrown cattle ranchers as well, influencing what we charge for our products to ensure the sustainability of our operations.

Last year, beef prices surged by about 8%, outpacing the increases seen in other meat categories, according to the Consumer Price Index. This trend underscores a broader reality- the number of beef cattle in the US has dwindled to its lowest levels in years. The pandemic exacerbated this decline, as safety and shipping issues emerged, alongside supply chain disruptions.Ā 

These challenges have left ranchers like us unable to maintain the affordability of our beef, as the overall rise in beef prices since the pandemic has made it increasingly difficult to keep our costs low.

Concurrently, the cost of processing has increased significantly over the last 4 years, further squeezing producers' margins.

Transparency and Accountability

At Florida Premium Beef, we prioritize transparency and accountability in all aspects of our operations which is why we bring the rise in cost since the pandemic to your attention. We understand the concerns of consumers and are committed to providing clarity on our pricing practices. By highlighting the broader context of rising beef prices and the challenges facing, we aim to foster understanding and trust within our community.

Even amidst the rise in prices, it's crucial to recognize the unique value proposition of grass-fed and finished beef. While it may be more expensive, our premium beef reflects a commitment to sustainability, quality, and animal welfare. We take the slower route, raising our cattle to 28 months old without the use of antibiotics or hormones, ensuring a premium product that meets the demands of conscientious consumers. By forgoing antibiotics and hormones, we prioritize the health and well-being of our animals, even though it results in a slower weight gain and ultimately, a lighter animal.

It's also important to note that grass-fed and finished beef takes longer to produce, requires more land and labor, and operates within a smaller infrastructure compared to conventional beef. However, we firmly believe that the higher price is justified by the superior taste, quality, and health benefits it offers.

Ā 

Florida Premium Beef

As we continue to navigate the complexities of the post-pandemic landscape, it's essential to approach the surge in beef prices with clarity and understanding.

At Florida Premium Beef, we've always remained steadfast in our commitment to providing consumers with premium, responsibly sourced beef products, even in the face of unprecedented challenges.

With our convenient online ordering system, we deliver our premium beef straight to your door, ensuring that you can enjoy delicious and responsibly sourced meat without ever having to leave the comfort of your home. Click here to shop now.

Ā 

Back to blog