Prices stay steady with tight supply
This week is all about Yes or No. Forget the Eurovision, forget Euro 2012. It's just a Yes or No on Thursday.
Thankfully, as far as beef prices are concerned it is a big 'yes' again this week as recent strong prices were maintained.
The low kill continues to help, with last week's estimated figure standing at approximately 24,000hd compared to 29,741hd last year.
The best prices as usual come from the northwest, with 450c/kg and 438c/kg paid for U and R grade in-spec heifers respectively. The same grades in the steers are at 444c/kg and 432c/kg. Out of spec stock are 6c/kg less.
Elsewhere, I hear that a base of 435c/kg continues to be secured in the northeast for heifers with a 430c/kg base mentioned from a number of other plants around the country. Actual quotes for the heifers are generally in the 425-430c/kg range. On the steers, the quotes are generally pretty close to 410-415c/kg.
Bulls show little or no change either. The quotes and prices for the U grades range from 425c/kg to 432c/kg, with the Rs at 415-420c/kg.
The Os are in a range of 400-414c/kg. Flat prices of 425c/kg for a mix of Rs and Us have been negotiated and I heard of 415c/kg for a mix of over-age bulls.
There are a few mixed opinions on the cows, with just the odd person beginning to think that they have topped out.