Farm Ireland

Monday 18 December 2017

Quality stock meeting good demand

Joe Healy

Quite an amount of activity on the suckler cow and heifer front is being reported, with quality stock meeting good demand. Prices being mentioned vary from €1,200-1,800 in the main for the in-calf heifers, with cows ranging from €1,000-1,800.

Good young suckler cows with a calf at foot were making €1,300-1,750/unit. A range from €1,000-1,500 was buying most of the dairy cows and heifers offered for sale during the week.

As for the weanlings and older steers and heifers, it was a mixed week with the lighter weanlings improved and the heavier types back somewhat. It was the opposite for the steers with the lighter stock up by 2-9c/kg while the over 400kg bullocks were up by 1-5c/kg. In the main the 300-600kg steers sold for €1.90-2.50/kg. Heavier types made €1.90-2.25/kg. Plainer lots ranged from €1.40-1.90/kg.

The majority of the heifers moved at €2.00-2.40/kg with poorer quality types making from €1.70-1.90/kg. Light bulls were up by 1-3c/kg at €2.20-2.90/kg. Bulls over 300kg made from €2.00-2.65/kg.

Plain types sold around the €1.55-1.80/kg. Heifer weanlings under 300kg sold for €2.30-2.80/kg. Heavier heifers made €2.10-2.60/kg. Lesser types were making €1.80-1.95/kg.

Ballinakill had 400 cattle for sale. The fancy store continues to sell well but there was an increased number of plainer cattle present and they remain more difficult to move. Heavy steers over 700kg made from €1.85-2.35/kg. Forward Continental stores sold for €1.80-2.40/kg. Lighter lots ranged €1.75-2.45/kg. Well fleshed heifers were selling for €1.75-2.20/kg. Stores sold for €1.70-2.10/kg. Weanling bulls traded at €1.65-2.00/kg.

The cattle trade was described as steady in Dowra Mart last Saturday for the 510 cattle on offer. Weanling heifers under 300kg were making from €1.80-3.00/kg. A few fancy lots made up to €3.25/kg.

The heavier weanlings made from €1.90-2.70/kg. Forward store heifers were selling from €1.70-2.70/kg. Weanling bulls under 300kg generally made from €1.70-3.00/kg. Some top lots topped out at €3.30/kg.

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Heavier bulls made from €1.80-2.85/kg. Steers over 600kg moved at €1.90-2.30/kg. Lighter stores made from €1.80-2.60/kg. The better cull cows sold from €1.70-2.10/kg. Cows for further feeding were making from €1.00-1.60/kg. The tops of the in-calf suckler heifers ranged from €1,400-1,870 while the best of the cows with a calf at foot made from €1,300-1,840.


Balla had more than 900 lots on offer. The store bullocks under 550kg continue to trade strongly as do the good quality store heifers. Heavy bullocks were making from €600-900 with their weight or €1.37-2.67/kg.

Lighter plainer types were making around €500-780 with the weight or €1.75-2.79/kg. Light heifers under 400kg were making €1.75-3.15/kg. Heavy heifers made from €1.84-2.65/kg. The tops in the suckler cows was a five year-old Charolais due to calve the middle of this month. She made €1,650. A four-year-old 775kg Charolais cull cow hit a high of €1,460.

The final evening weanling sale for the year at Carnew Mart saw 380hd offered for sale. Bull weanlings were making from €350-750 over the €/kg while the heifers sold for €250-650 over. The smaller numbers of 350hd at their cattle sale met with a lively trade for beef and store cattle. Prices were up by €10-20/hd.

Beef and forward store steers were selling for €650-980 over the weight. Stores made from €350-780 over. Beef heifers sold for €550-850 with their weight. The stores made from €350-770 over. Fleshed cull cows sold up to €855 over the weight while feeders moved for as little as €50 with their weight.

Bullocks at Maam Cross sold for €1.85-2.55/kg. Heifers made from a low of €1.60/kg for the plainer lots up to a tops of €2.45/kg for the quality types.

Cull cows ranged from €1.20-1.85/kg while suckler cows with a calf at foot made from €950-1,500.

Bullocks weighing less than 400kg were making from €250-415 with the weight in Ballymote. Lots between 400-500kg made from €325-710 over their weight.

Heavier lots made up to €700 over. Heifers under 400kg sold from €255-555 over the €/kg. The 400-500kg heifers were making from €320-800 over. Heavier types sold for €400-925 with the weight. Weanling heifers under 300kg made from €250-510 over their weight. Heifers over this weight ranged from €290-515 with the weight.

Bulls under 300kg were selling for €280-575 over the weight.

Heavier types sold for €350-640 over. Suckler cows sold for prices ranging from €950-1,500, with the higher figure paid for a first calver with a heifer calf born in November. Friesian store cull cows sold to a low of €300 under the weight.

Heavy fit cows were making from €300-435 with the €/kg.

Top class bulls over 600kg up in Raphoe were selling for €475-965 over the weight.

Beef bullocks sold for €670-860 over. Stores made from €400-795 with the weight. Beef heifers ranged from €510-970 over the €/kg. Stores made from €350-840 with their weight.

Last week's sale of dairy stock at Kilkenny Mart saw the freshly calved heifers and cows sell from €900-1,760. In-calf heifers and cows sold for €800-1,320. Maiden heifers made from €600-790.

Irish Independent