Quotes fall away by up to 6c/kg as kill stays strong
Beef quotes have fallen for the second week in a row, while the weekly kill remains strong. Some 29,230hd were slaughtered last week, compared with 28,850 in the corresponding week last year.
Donegal Meats remains on top but has reduced its quote for in-spec steers by 6c/kg to 361c/kg and 364c/kg for the R and U grades respectively, while heifers are making 3c/kg more.
Elsewhere, the base price on the grid is generally 355-358c/kg for the steers and 360-363c/kg for the heifers. Plants up and down the country are pretty similar on quotes but actual prices paid can vary a bit depending on how hard the farmer can bargain. Some finishers have held out for and secured up to 366c/kg for steers and up to 370c/kg for heifers.
U-grade young bulls are making 364-372c/kg, while Rs are generally in the 355-364c/kg range, with the O grades at 342-348c/kg. Some plants appear to be more sticky on weights and ages for young bulls.
Commenting on the trade, the IFA's Michael Doran said that with numbers of prime cattle extremely scarce, farmers selling those types were negotiating prices of 6c/kg over the quoted figure.
ICSA livestock prices co-ordinator John Cleary called on meat factories to display the average price per kilo paid for loads of cattle on dockets.
Mr Cleary said transparency around pricing was urgently required in order to restore farmer confidence in the whole pricing system.
"With the huge variety of prices paid on the grid, it is becoming more difficult for farmers to be able to compare prices at a glance," he said. "In addition, giving an average price would lead to a more balanced view of the new grid pricing system and enable farmers to compare grid prices with flat prices.