IFA National Livestock Committee Chairman Henry Burns said factories have to pay 5c to 10c/kg over quoted prices to get adequate numbers of cattle this week. He said supplies are extremely tight and farmers should dig in and bargain hard with the factory to maximise the price.
Henry Burns said the kill at just over 26,000 per week is very tight. Steer supplies are exceptionally tight running at slightly over half of the 2010 levels. The overall kill is down 8,000 per week compared to 2010 and 4,000 per week less than 2011 levels.
The IFA livestock leader said the increase in prices in the UK and Northern Ireland is a reflection of tight supplies. He added, “Demand will be strong in the coming weeks with Easter on April 8th, which is only 5 weeks away. This will be followed by the European Football Championships which kicks off in early June and runs into July. The London Olympics will be a massive €2bn event and commences on July 27th and runs until August 12th.”
On prices, Henry Burns said steers are making a base of €4.00 to €4.05/kg, heifers €4.10 – €4.15/kg and bulls are ranging from €4.00 – €4.10/kg for R grades and €4.10 – €4.15/kg for U grades. Cow prices have also improved ranging from €3.40/kg to €3.80/kg and there is a very good demand for heifers to go North with flat prices of €4.25/kg for R + U grades.