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Beef & Sheep Update 28th March

Sheep and Cattle in Wicklow

Beef Update

IFA Livestock chair Declan Hanrahan said beef price rises of 10c/kg over the past week must continue. He said demand for beef in our key UK and EU markets is strong with supplies in these markets reducing for the year, creating real potential for strong and sustained growth in beef prices here. EU beef production dropped 4% in 2023, with a further reduction of 1% projected for this year. UK beef supplies are predicted to tighten in particular for the second half of the year and into 2025 as figures show the numbers of cattle under 12 months of age to be down 3% year on year. “These figures provide real opportunity for Bord Bia and meat factories to increase volumes and returns for Irish beef from these high value markets which must be returned to farmers,” he said. Declan Hanrahan said the roll out of the PGI for Irish Grass Fed Beef on the Italian market must add further value to our beef exports and be returned in higher beef prices to farmers. “Market conditions and supplies of beef cattle are pointing prices in only one direction and this upward momentum must continue in prices paid to farmers.”He said farmers should sell hard to ensure the realities of the market conditions are reflected in beef price and the upward momentum continues.

Beef Price Update 28/03/2024

Base Quotes Steer €5.15/5.25kg. Heifers €5.20/5.30kg. Higher deals and flat prices for larger and specialist lots. Y Bulls R/U €5.10/5.40Kg. Cows €4.10/4.90kg.

Supply Figures as Reported by DAFM – WK 12 (24.03.2024)

AnimalNumberChange prev wk% of totalYTDYTD Change
Y Bulls1,706▼-374 5%32,610▼-2,118 
Bull550▼-96 2%5,038▼-308 
Cow7,605▼-1,086 23%107,142▲14,275
Heifer9,296▼-1,021 28%126,733▲5,718
Veal-V1,892▼-182 6%11,718▼-11,730 
Total33,106▼-2,616 100%430,792▲3,665

Official Irish Prices as Reported by DAFM – WK 12 (24.03.2024)

c/kg (Incl. VAT)U3Change prev wkR3Change prev wkO3Change prev wkP+3Change prev wk
Y Bulls537▲1530▲3513▲2501▲2

Official GB Prices as Reported by AHDB

 SteersSteersHeifersHeifersY bullY bullCow
Change▼-3 ▲2▼-4 ▼-3 ▼-5 ▼-9 ▲1
Price in c/kg (Incl VAT)612.7622.7609.4614.8593.7592.8457.1

Euro Price for the Most Recent Week  (€/KG Deadweight excl. VAT)

Country & Type05.03.202204.03.202309.03.2024
EU + Y Bulls€ 4.80€ 5.17€ 5.06
IE + Steers€ 4.58€ 5.25€ 5.13
UK + Steers € 4.96€ 5.44€ 5.79

Live Cattle Exports W/C 04.03.2024

Sheep Update

IFA Sheep Chairman Adrian Gallagher said hogget prices have hit €9.00kg and above as factories struggle to match supplies with market demand.  Factory prices are ranging from €8.70/kg to €9.10/kg for hogget’s as the Easter and Ramadan festivals and strong supermarket sales continue to drive the trade. The limited number of spring lamb on offer are coming in at €9.20/kg to 9.50/kg in general with higher deals for groups and larger lots.  Strong factory demand is feeding through to mart sales where prices are comparable to and in cases above what factories are offering. Total throughput to date is back 19,461 head with lamb and hogget throughput back 21,842 head. Cull ewes are making from €3.70kg to €4.00kg in general. The IFA Sheep Chairman said farmers should sell hard and move lambs as they become fit in a rising market.

Lamb Price Update 28/03/2024

Hogget’s €8.70/9.10/kg. Weights to 24kg. Spring Lamb €9.20/9.50kg. Higher deals groups/larger lots. Ewes €3.70/4.00/kg.

Supply Figures as Reported by DAFM – WK 12 (24.03.2024)

AnimalFigureChangeYTDYTD Change
Lambs/Hoggets48,038▼-8,172 548,337▼-21,842 
Spring Lambs463▲4639,034▲8,224
Ewes and Rams5,413▲24961,276▼-5,836 
Light Lambs8▲837▼-7 
TOTAL53,922▼-7,452 618,684▼-19,461 

Official Irish Prices as Reported by DAFM – WK 12 (24.03.2024)

c/kg (Incl. VAT)This week Change prev. wk2023Change prev. yr
National Avg Price844.57▲29654.49▲190
YTD Avg722.53▲11620.57▲102

Official GB Prices as Reported by AHDB

 R3L Overall SQQ*Type of lamb
16/03/2024794.6789.8Old season lamb
23/03/2024846.4838.8Old season lamb
Price in c/kg (Incl VAT)1039.31030.0 

Live Sheep Exports March 14th 2024

Source: Bord Bia

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