IFA National Livestock Committee Chair Brendan Golden said beef prices have increased 5c/kg this week on the back of tight supplies and strong market demand.
He said despite firmer prices, the Prime Irish composite price lags 34c/kg behind the prime export benchmark price. This is not acceptable and the price differential must be closed immediately.
He said prices in our key export markets are strengthening, creating favourable conditions for Irish beef and factories must move forward with stronger beef prices that reflect current market conditions.
Base prices for steers are now making from €4.60kg to €4.70kg while heifers range from €4.65kg to €4.75kg. Young bulls R/U are making from €4.80kg to €5.00kg. The cow trade remains firm with prices ranging from €3.80kg to €4.40kg.
There are indications of tighter grass cattle supplies in the coming weeks due to poor weather conditions and demand is expected to increase from NI buyers for finished cattle as the year progresses.
Brendan Golden said farmers should strongly resist any attempts by factories to buy cattle at lower quotes and consider the mart outlet were prices for forward store and finished cattle are proving competitive with factory quotes.