Farm Ireland

Wednesday 24 January 2018

Prices ¤100 better than last year despite rising numbers

Caitriona Murphy

Caitriona Murphy

Weanling prices remained €100 ahead of last year in the past week, despite an increase in the number of animals for sale. Farmer buyers were the main driving force, as the majority of exporters wait for the big flush of cattle expected in the coming weeks. However, some shippers were stirred into action for good Belgian Blue export types over the weekend.

Heavy weanling bulls of 400kg and over sold for €1.95-2.10/kg at Skibbereen mart on Friday but lighter bulls sold for €2-2.35/kg. Heifer weanlings also met a good trade, with the majority of them exceeding €2/kg on the day.

Top prices for weanling bulls at Loughrea mart on Friday night ranged from €2.84-3.12/kg, with the top bull price of €875 being paid for a 280kg Charolais.

The top price for heifer weanlings was €1,080 for a 350kg Belgian Blue cross, equating to €3.08/kg. Weanling heifers ranged from €2.59-3.08/kg.

At Macroom mart, weanling prices on Saturday were approximately €100/hd higher than the same time last year. Charolais type weanling bulls sold for €2-2.20/kg or €400 over the weight, while heifers sold for €300 over the weight. Mart manager John O'Mahoney said prices were holding up well ahead of the October weanling surge. "Shippers are holding off until the big numbers come out but farmers are buying very strongly," he said.

Top prices of up to €3.38/kg were paid for weanling bulls at the show and sale at Tullamore mart last week. Mart manager Antoinette Daly reported very strong demand for quality weanlings, with farmer customers keen for Charolais, Limousin and Simmental types, while the shippers were active for Belgian Blues for export.

The best of the 270 weanling bulls on offer sold for €2.70-3.38/kg at the evening sale. The top price paid on the night was €1,320 for a 390kg Belgian Blue bull.

The top heifer weanlings ranged from €2.21-2.77/kg, with the top prices paid for three 254kg Charolais weanlings that made €700/hd or €2.75/kg and a 222kg Limousin heifer that sold for €615 or €2.77/kg.

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Weanling prices ranged from €2.25-3.00/kg at Kilkenny mart on Thursday, while prices for weanling heifers ranged from €1.90-2.40/kg.

Indo Farming