Is the end of the cattle glut finally in sight?
These are difficult times for those with cattle fit for slaughter, whether they're indoors or out.
A combination of poor prices is being driven by continuing very strong numbers - 37,771 for the week ending October 7 - which in turn are being driven by poor ground conditions.
This has enabled factories to pull bullock prices back to between €3.70-3.75/kg. It's the perfect storm from the factories point of view.
There are those in the cattle business, however, who believe that the end of the glut may be within insight.
Jim Bush, auctioneer with New Ross mart, quoted me Thomas Fuller's famous line, "the night is always darkest before the dawn", on the state of play..
Based on conversations with factory agents, he predicts that numbers of heavy cattle may well begin to dry up sooner rather than later.
"Men I'm talking with don't believe that the numbers are there to keep coming at the rate they are," he said.
Indeed by this day last week reports were emerging from the south-east that the Goodman group was very anxious for stock and that the base price there had firmed again to €3.80/kg.