Beef Prices: Factories maintain pressure on prices
The business of selling cattle out of sheds at the minute is a bit like the lady who meets that apparently very nice chap on a Saturday night. He takes her number and promises to ring.
Cattle farmers with beef to sell today are, like that lady, yet again discovering that if, or when, ‘your man’ does ring, he’s not half as nice as he appeared.
Unfortunately, there’s very little loving in the beef trade this week, Valentine’s week or not.
This is another way of saying that factory prices as of yesterday morning continue to be under pressure, with last week’s quotes of €3.80/kg for bullocks reported to be easing back to a more general €3.75/kg, while heifer quotes also appeared easier at €3.85 from €3.90/kg.
That said, it will be Wednesday before a verdict on these prices can be realistically past as any stock going through plants today or yesterday were more than likely bought last week at those higher prices.
An issue that was brought to my attention recently has been the cutting in the Aberdeen Angus bonus from €0.15-0.20/ kg back to €0.10/kg. While I recognise this bonus has a history of volatility, many who bought Angus stock last autumn would have been banking on the higher figure remaining stable for the winter months.
As I said last week, strong supply is killing the trade for the winter finisher.