Factories' own stock and wet hits prices
The good news is that cull cows, which are generally seen as a barometer of the markets, have remained solid.
However, the steer, heifer and - to a lesser extent - the young bulls have all seen the processors exert downward pressure on their prices. Word is that they are using some of their own feedlot cattle and the bad weather to drive down quotes and price.
Disappointing, definitely, but not really surprising. Farmers could do with some improvement to the weather as poaching by heavy stock is the biggest factor on a lot of farms at the moment.
Most plants are currently quoting €4.10/kg for the steers, with a range from €4.05-4.15/kg. In the main, the most are being sold at a base of between €4.10-4.15/kg. A definite 5c/kg slip sees a general quote of €4.20/kg for heifers, and a base of €4.20-4.25/kg being offered for most of them.
Some of the bulls being killed early this week were bought at €4.20/kg for mixes, but this is more difficult to achieve today. The U grades are making from €4.15-4.20/kg, with the Rs at anything from €4.00-4.15/kg.
Prices for the Os are around €3.90-3.95/kg, with O grades in the south struggling to pass the €3.85/kg mark. As alluded to earlier, the cull cows are firm with prices ranging from €3.50-4.00, depending on the type of cow in question.
The P and O grades vary from €3.50-3.70/kg, with the better quality heavy continentals making from €3.75-4.00/kg.
The estimated kill figure for last week stood at 28,800hd, which is some 800hd down on the corresponding week last year.