End of quota era boosts dairy sales

Joe Healy

Ringside shows a very positive week for steers, heifers and the better quality weanling bulls but a difficult week for the weanling heifers and the plainer bulls. The arrival of a new era for dairying from tomorrow on seems to have helped dairy sales, with farmers quite anxious for good cows and heifers and prices generally ranging from €1,200-1,600. Some top types were making up to €2,000.

Light steers were up 2-3c/kg at €2.35-3.00/kg. The 400-600kg lots moved at €2.25-2.80/kg, with the heavier types improved by 4-8c/kg at €2.20-2.55/kg. Lesser quality lots were selling for €1.85-1.95/kg. Heifers under 500kg were making from €2.40-2.90/kg. The heavier lots sold for 2.25-2.70/kg. Plainer heifers made 1.95-2.15/kg.

In the weanling sections, the bulls in the main were making €2.40-3.00/kg, with some better quality lighter lots making up to €3.20/kg. The more dairy bred bulls sold for €1.80-2.10/kg.

The heifer weanlings in some cases were back by as much as 11c/kg.

This was especially the case with the heavier types where prices ranged from €2.60/kg to €3.00/kg. Heifers under 400kg moved at anything from €2.70/kg to €3.35/kg. Poorer types sold for €2.20-2.50/kg.

At Kilrush Mart, the Friesian bull calves were making €60-200/hd. Continental bull calves ranged from €250 to €410, with the Herefords making €200-385. Hereford heifers sold up to €305.

In Kilkenny a special suckler sale realised a top price of €2,300 for a cow with twin calves at foot, while another lot with one calf sold for €1,960. Overall, prices ran from €1,300 to €2,300, with the in-calf cows making €1,300-1,760.

Heavy steers moved at €2.00-2.40/kg or €600-900 with their weight. Forward stores were making €2.00-2.76/kg. Steers under 500kg sold at €1.70-3.35/kg. Beef and forward store heifers made €2.15-2.80/kg, while stores made up to €3.05/kg or €800 with the weight. Continental cull cows ranged from €1.60/kg to €2.17/kg. Friesians sold at €1.25-1.90/kg.

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Store heifers under 500kg in Ballymote were making from €420 to €900 over the €1/kg. Lots over 500kg made €500-755 over. Cull cows made €300-705 with their weight. The light weanling bulls sold for €380-710 with the weight. Heavier types ranged from €420-1,000 over. On Thursday next they are having a special bullock sale, while the following Thursday a special Angus bullock and heifer sale will be held.

Dowra had 760hd on offer last Saturday. Weanling bulls under 300kg made €2.20-4.10/kg. Lots between 300-400kg ranged from €2.00-3.65/kg. The 400-550 kg types moved at €1.90-2.80/kg. Heavier bulls sold for €2.00-2.80/kg. Steers under 550kg made €2.10-3.00/kg, while lots over 550kg made €2.00-2.80/kg.

Weanling heifers up to 300kg were making €2.00-3.85/kg. The 300-400kg made €1.90-3.50/kg. Heifers between 400-550kg were selling for €1.80-3.00/kg, with the heifers over 550kg making €2.00-2.65kg. The best of the cull cows varied from €1.80/kg to €2.35/kg, while feeders made €1.20-1.90/kg.

Heavy bullocks and heifers were a very strong trade at Mayo/Sligo Mart, with prices in general making €750-950 with their weight for top lots. Top quality lots of weanlings were making over €3.00/kg. They opened a new cow ring with a special suckler cow sale that saw a full clearance on the day.

One cow with a good Charolais bull calf at foot made €2,200, while a good red Limousin heifer on point of calving made €1,900. Cull cows made €1.80-2.30/kg.

Top class bulls over 600kg sold for €465-1,015 over the weight at Raphoe Mart. Beef bullocks were selling for €625-930 over. Stores made €400-1,000 with the weight. In the heifer ring, the beef lots moved at €590-935 with the €1/kg. Stores sold for €380-865 over. Cull cow prices ran from €700 to €1,375.

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