IFA National Livestock Chairman Angus Woods said the cattle trade is solid this week with factories paying a base price of €3.85 for steers and €3.95 for heifers.
He said, with the good weather farmers are very busy and factories are finding it very difficult to get adequate numbers. He said in some cases in the last week top prices of €3.90 and €4.00/kg were paid to get stock.
Angus Woods said with the schools reopening across our main markets in the UK and the EU, beef demand will pick up as is normal at this time of the year.
The IFA Livestock Leader said in the UK market, our main export destination, cattle prices continue to increase, up another 3p/kg again last week. He said the AHDB report that cattle prices in Britain have increased by 10p/kg in the last 3 weeks and are up 35p/kg since May 1st.
He said the R3 steer beef price in Britain is £3.57/kg, which is equivalent to €4.39/kg including VAT.
On numbers, Angus Woods said the weekly kill is running at just over 30,000 head. He said the AIMs data would point to tight finished cattle supplies over the coming weeks. Compared to the same period last year, the number of beef cattle in the 24 to 36 month age category are down 44,000 head compared to June 2015.
Angus Woods said IFA is continuing to work with live exporters and the Department of Agriculture to get the live export to Turkey up and running. He called on the Government to commit additional resources, in terms of manpower and funds, to secure greater market access for beef and live cattle. He said, “It is essential that more resources are provided to assist the live export trade and no effort can be spared to get the vitally important trade to Turkey moving as soon as possible. IFA has made it very clear to Minister Creed that a strong live export trade this autumn is essential for competition and to put a strong floor under weanling prices”.