Demand for weanling bulls holding firm at 2017 prices
Strong demand from both the export and home trade has got the weanling sale season off to a firm start, in particular for quality bulls, at prices on par with 2017.
Mart managers are reporting weights for age as being very good, especially for the bulls, which are showing no ill effects of the famine for grass experienced on most farms over June and July.
Numbers on offer at the regular Tuesday weanling sale at Ennis Mart were generally low, and manager Martin McNamara said the "strongest demand was for the forward bulls suitable for early finishing".
The heavier continental bulls sold for up to €2.90/kg, with the lighter weights slightly less, while the heavier continental heifers matched the bulls on price.
Some of the higher bull prices at Ennis included a Limousin 400kg sold for €1,160 (€2.90/kg), a Charolais 380kg sold for €1,085 (€2.86/kg), a Charolais 280kg sold for €800 (€2.86/kg) and a Limousin 290kg sold for €840 (€2.89/kg).
In the heifers, a Limousin 227kg sold for €660 (€2.90/kg), Charolais 460kg sold for €1,100 (€2.39/kg) and in non-continentals a Hereford X 375kg sold for €730 (€1.95/kg).
There were just over 100 weanlings at the regular Thursday evening sale at Mountrath Mart, where manager Glen Cooper reported "the bulls sold very well, but demand was not as good for the heifers".
"It was mostly farmers buying, but we will have the exporters for the next EU (grades) Weanling Sale on August 16," he added.