In support of Food-Energy-Water Systems (FEWS) analysis to enhance its sustainability for New Mexico (NM), this study evaluated observed trends in beef cattle population in response to environmental and economic changes. The specific goal was to provide an improved understanding of the behavior of NM’s beef cattle production systems relative to precipitation, temperature, rangeland conditions, production of hay and crude oil, and prices of hay and crude oil. Historical data of all variables were available for the 1973–2017 period. The analysis was conducted using generalized autoregressive conditional heteroscedasticity models. The results indicated declining trends in beef cattle population and prices. The most important predictors of beef cattle population variation were hay production, mean annual hay prices, and mean annual temperature, whereas mean annual temperature, cattle feed sold, and crude oil production were the most important predictors for calf population that weigh under 500 lb. Prices of beef cattle showed a strong positive relationship with crude oil production, mean annual hay prices, rangeland conditions, and mean annual precipitation. However, mean annual temperature had a negative relationship with mean annual beef prices. Variation in mean annual calf prices was explained by hay production, mean annual temperature, and crude oil production. This analysis suggested that NM’s beef cattle production systems were affected mainly and directly by mean annual temperature and crude oil production, and to a lesser extent by other factors studied in this research.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited