Farm Ireland

Saturday 19 January 2019

6 beef price bonus schemes that farmers finishing cattle should know about

Claire Fox

Claire Fox

We've compiled a list of bonus schemes that are being offered to beef farmers by meat processing companies and cattle societies and how they can significantly boost your income.

Belted Galloway

Owners of Belted Galloway cattle are being offered a bonus of 20c/kg by Euro Farm Food through their plant in Duleek, Co Meath.

The plant requires a minimum of four to five finished Belted Galloways per week and is offering farmers a bonus of of 20c/kg for cattle under 30 months above base on the grid, plus Quality Assurance (QA) provided they meet the usual QA criteria. They are also offering cattle over 30 months 10c/kg above base .

belted galloway 1.jpg

Those with under fleshed carcase or outside the payment structure will be at market valuation on the day. Farmers are paid for on the day of slaughter at Euro Farm Foods.

Farmers are being advised that cattle must have strong Belted Galloway breeding in them with a least three quarter bred cattle preferred.


According to the Irish Angus Producers Group a Standard Premium is paid out on all qualifying and certified Angus cattle. It is based on the weekly fixed price in conjunction with the carcass grading.

Also Read

Angus Cow

Premiums include a QA Bonus of 12c per kg and an Angus Premium of 10c per kg. A deduction of €6 per animal will be made at slaughter time.

 Weight for steers should range between 230-380kg carcass and heifers 220kg-380kg carcass. Both steers and heifers must be under 30 months and farmers must be a member of the Bord Bia Quality Assurance Scheme to avail of  bonuses offered by Ashbourne Meats, ABP and Kepak.

Limousin and Ashbourne Meats

Limousin Cattle owners can receive a quality assurance bonus of 12c/kg on bullocks under 30 months from Ashbourne Meats. 

Certified cows in the E grade can earn 385c/per kg while stock bulls of U grade can expect to make 305c/kg.


During the year a standard bonus of 12/kg is offered to farmers of prime Hereford cattle, while an all year round conformation grade top up applies to all qualifying Herefords as follows:

All R- and R= grades will receive plus 2c/kg on top of Irish Hereford Bonus, while all R+ grades will receive  plus 4c/kg on top of the Irish Hereford Bonus and all U grades 6c.

4 121.jpg
Eddie Flanagan with his Hereford cattle at his farm in Tulsk, Co Roscommon; (below) his son Edward with purebred Texel sheep Photo: Declan Gilmore.

In order to qualify farmers must ensure that carcase weights range from 220kg to 380kg, conformation should be O or better and O- for heifers only, while fat scores should range from 2+ to 4 +.

Farmers who provide cattle during the off-season period can expect to earn prices of up to 20c per kg.


A bonus scheme exists for Charolais cull cows and heifers in conjunction with the Irish Charolais Society and Slaney Foods.

The bonus payment of 10c/kg  is eligible for pedigree Charolais cows and 5c/kg for crossbred cows with CH or CHX on their passport.

Pedigree Charolais heifers with a copy of their pedigree cert under the age of 36 months are eligible for the 12c/kg bonus and will be subject to the national quality assurance grid and the weekly base price.

To avail of the scheme farmers must ensure that all cows are Quality Assured and it is only applicable to cows of fat scores of 2, 3 and 4 in excess of 270kg deadweight. Meanwhile, all heifers must be Quality Assured to receive the bonus and no weight limit applies.

Belgian Blue

Ashbourne Meats offer a 5c/kg bonus for Belgian Blue bulls of a minimum of U and  E grade with an upper limit of 500kg carcass and a fat score of 2+.

Belgian Blue Heifers should be a minimum of  R+ to E grade with an ideal carcass weight of 360kg-400kg and a fat score of 3.

For Stories Like This and More
Download the FarmIreland App

Online Editors