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Monday 17 December 2018

Ballinasloe plant tops U-grade cattle table

New figures reflect growing influence of dairy stock on the kill profile

Roscommon Mart - celebrating 58 years in business. Putting on the lot numbers. Photo Brian Farrell
Roscommon Mart - celebrating 58 years in business. Putting on the lot numbers. Photo Brian Farrell
A handfull: Cian O’Sullivan, a first year Agricultural Science Student at CIT, pictured on the family farm at Cooleanig, Beaufort, Co Kerry with his triplet Texel lambs (two white and one black). Cian also breeds Zwartbles and Beltex. Photo:Valerie O’Sullivan

Martin Ryan

O and P grade cattle made up almost 60pc of the national kill last year, an analysis of Department of Agriculture figures for 2017 shows.

O grade stock accounted for 45pc of the 2017 kill, with P grades making up 13pc. Close to one third of all cattle killed graded R, while the remaining 9pc were U grades.

The figures highlight the growing 'dairy-isation' of the country's kill profile, as the impact of the increasing dairy cow numbers means that pure dairy stock and dairy crosses comprise a greater share of the cattle slaughtered.

Liffey Meats at Ballinasloe had the highest percentage of U grade steers in the national kill.

Almost one in every three cattle killed in the Ballinasloe plant graded U, which was well ahead of the second and third placed plants, which were ABP Clones (21.7pc) and Liffey Meats Ballyjamesduff (17.7pc).

R grade cattle made up 32.6pc of the kill in 2017, with Moyvalley Meats having the highest share of this grade in its kill at 57.1pc. The second- and third-placed factories were ABP Clones (50.3pc) and Liffey Meats Ballyjamesduff (49.1pc) respectively.

O grades made up 45.1pc of the kill. The factories with the lowest share of O grades were Moyvalley Meats (22.9pc), Liffey Meats Ballinasloe (23.6pc) and ABP Clones (24.6pc).

The factories with the lowest percentage of P grades were Liffey Meats Ballinasloe (2.4pc), ABP Clones (3.3pc) and Kepak Clare (3.7pc).

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The P-grade share of the national kill is certain to rise as with increased numbers of dairy stock and greater usage of Jersey crosses by milk suppliers.

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