Farm Ireland

Saturday 18 November 2017

Increased buyer numbers keep mart prices strong

Joe Healy

Prices across the board have either held steady or improved over the past week. All marts reported increased numbers of buyers, with exporters and local farmers active for the weanlings. Northern and midland buyers were present in several marts, ensuring that the store trade was improved, especially for the quality forward types. Year on year, prices for those are up by more than €50/hd in most cases.

In Ennis on Saturday, there were 1,250 cattle on offer. Prices for store bullocks were up €15-25 on the past week. Prices for heifers, especially breeding ones, were up €30-40/hd, due mainly to the presence of buyers from the midlands, the north and local farmers.

Store bullocks made €260-500 with the weight, while plainer lots made €200-370 over.

In the heifer ring, the best stores made €200-650 over. Dry cows met a great trade as good quality lots made €100-420 over their weight. Suckler cows with calves at foot made €1,100-1,470 for the better types on offer, while older cows with calves made upwards of €850/hd.

Ennis Mart is holding a special sale of 31 springers, calving from December to February, this Saturday.

Even though the trade was good, Kilkenny Mart reported that overall quality was poorer than in recent weeks. Heavy continental bullocks made €1.60-1.80/kg. Steers of 400-600kg sold for €130-550 over. British Friesian types made more than €1.50/kg, while the Limousins and Charolais made €1.80-1.92/kg. Steers under 400kg generally made €1.70-1.87/kg, while Angus, Hereford and Friesians sold for €1.40-1.50/kg.

In the Kilkenny heifer ring, beefy types sold for €185-530 over. Angus heifers sold for €1.30-1.40/kg, butcher heifers made €1.45-1.68/kg and continental store heifers sold for €1.55-1.85/kg. Cows with a calf at foot made €900-1,330, while in-calf cows made €800-1,300/hd.

Continental cull cows made €30-320 over and Friesians made from €200 under up to €150 over.

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In Raphoe, top-class bulls of more than 600kg made €300-605 over. Beef bullocks sold for €300-560 over, store bullocks made €200-502 over, beef heifers sold for €250-530, store heifers made €200-420 over and cull cows sold for €400-1,150.

Prices in Enniscorthy were fully maintained for the larger entry of 825 cattle on offer. Demand is holding strong, especially for quality forward stores. Prices improved for quality lots by €10-15/hd.

Beef bullocks made €265-530 over the weight, while stores made €205-475 over. Well-fleshed heifers sold for €210-450 along with weight. Lighter types made €180-390 over. Depending on breed and condition, the cull cows ranged from €85 under to €315 over.

Dairy cows were up by €20-30/hd and sold for €875-1,545 each and sucklers sold for €670-1310.

Trade for the young calves was up by €10/hd. Continental bull calves sold for €150-400. Heifers made €130-370/hd. Prices for the Friesian bulls ran from €95-195/hd. Hereford and Angus bull calves made €110-265, while the heifers sold for €95-220 each.

Irish Independent