IFA National Livestock Committee Chairman Michael Doran said talk of a price increase from the factories was hollow and cheap, when they are doing everything to hold back an increase and not even looking for a price rise from retailers despite the positive market situation.
He said farmers are not going to sell cattle out of sheds at loss making prices and will have to put the handbrake on supplies to secure a viable price.
Michael Doran said, “With the last of the grass cattle moving this week, farmers must dig in hard and demand a substantial price increase from factories and agents. They must make it clear they are not prepared to sell beef cattle out of sheds at current loss making prices.”
The IFA livestock leader said there is very strong demand for beef and the market is well capable of returning a substantial price increase. He said farmers are angry at the failure of the factories to look for or secure a price increase from a positive market.
Michael Doran said with the major increase in costs this year and concentrate feed up €60 to €70 per tonne, winter finishers need a price of €3.50/kg.
On the market side, Michael Doran said the UK cattle prices are in the order of £2.68 to £2.70/kg str which is equivalent to €3.33/kg at an 85p/€1 exchange rate. European prices are ranging from €3.25/kg to €3.60/kg. World market prices continue to rise with the Brazilian price now up at the Irish price level.
On the supply side, Michael Doran said the Department of Agriculture AIM figures for August 1st shows that there is a reduction in total cattle numbers compared to last year of 330,000 head. In addition, the kill to date this year is up 117,000 head and live exports are up an additional 55,500 head.