Martin Coughlan: Big kill figure keeps prices on the floor
Factory prices remain unchanged for the majority of farmers and feeders, with heifers on a €3.85/kg base and bullocks on €3.75/kg.
Prices for cull cows were also unchanged, with Rs averaging €3.00/kg, Os on €2.80-2.85/kg and your better P floating around €2.60-2.70/kg.
With bulls, Us continue on €3.50-3.60/kg with Rs making €3.40-3.50/kg and O grades back to €3.20-3.30/kg, with Friesians possibly less.
The kill for last week was 35,411, up 111 on the previous week - hence the lack of movement on price.
The only positivity that I heard yesterday came from ICMSA's livestock chairman Des Morrison, who commented on the importance of having independent slaughter plants in the system.
"We note that some of the smaller independent factories seem to be offering better prices for certain types of cows and bulls, while the 'Big Three' are concentrating on 'in-spec' cattle," he said.
"This is exactly the kind of situation that shows why we need an independent group of factories and beef processors."
He is right. The first signs of improvement in beef price are generally reflected in what these plants are willing to pay.