Price gap between Irish and UK fat cattle soars 50pc in a month
The price differential between Irish and British fat cattle increased by more than 50pc over the last month amid mounting Brexit uncertainty.
Irish finishers received €85/hd less than their British counterparts for fat heifers this month, compared to a €55/hd difference in January.
Figures released by the LMC in Northern Ireland show that the Irish price for R3 heifers stood at 379.9c/kg for the week ending February 10, while farmers in Britain received 405.7c/kg.
This represents a price differential of 25.8c/kg, which equates to €85/hd on a 330kg carcass.
Meanwhile, the price difference between Northern Ireland and Republic for R3 heifers is 18c/kg or €60/hd.
The ICSA pointed out that an even bigger differential has emerged for young bulls, with the gap between British and Irish prices widening to €150/hd for U3 animals.
"The differential is unacceptable and does not even allow for the fact that bulls over 400kg are being crucified. The reality is that Irish farmers are being hit much harder by Brexit than British farmers, even though Ireland did not cause Brexit," said ICSA beef chairman Edmund Graham.
Mr Graham pointed out that prices for young bulls are 32c/kg back on last year, but just 7c/kg lower in Britain.