Mad Cow Created Volatile Beef Market

Torrington, WY – It's been more then two months since the first US case of mad cow disease was found. And the owner of the state's largest cattle sale barn says producers are still getting less money for cattle they sell. Lex Madden from Torrington Livestock Markets says beef prices bounced around a lot. Before the BSE case, cattle ready to go to slaughter sold for $94 per 100 pounds. That price plummeted to $74, then climbed up to $80 and $88, before falling back down into the 70s again. Madden says the volatility of the market has been tough on producers. He says there's a danger of picking a down week to sell and getting considerably less money for your cattle. But Madden thinks American producers should feel fortunate. He says prices are a lot better then he expected they would be, and clearly better then what's occurred in Canada, where mad cow was found in May.