Farm Ireland

Saturday 24 March 2018

Roaring trade continues for quality stock

Cattle marts

Joe Healy

There doesn't seem to be any let up in the extremely strong mart trade, with quite a few marts reporting an improvement in prices over the past week.

Extra farmer buying ensured a strong store trade, while keen factory interest meant that any well-fleshed stock met with very good prices. Good, prime cattle made well in excess of €2/kg and heavy continental cull cows made up to €1.65/kg (€630 over the weight). The top price for fat Friesian cows was €1.50/kg and suckler cows with a calf at foot ranged from €1,000-1,600 generally.

On Saturday, Balla Mart had 650hd on offer and prices for all types were up €20-40 on the previous week. Compared with the same day last year, the average price was up by a massive €246/hd. Good-quality, heavy bullocks made €1.44-2.31/kg (€400-685 with their weight). Forward stores sold for €1.47-2.47/kg, while lighter bullocks made €1.94-2.67 /kg.

Strong weanling bulls sold for €1.70-2.17 /kg, while the lighter types made €1.87-2.72/kg. Demand outstripped supply for the 450 cattle on offer at Kilkenny Mart. Trade was very sharp, with beef heifers selling to a top price of €2.10/kg and well-fleshed steers peaking at €2.15/kg. Continental beef bullocks sold for €2-2.15/kg. Forward store bullocks generally made €1.80-2.17, while a few top quality lots sold up to a high of €2.36/kg.

Continental stores under 400kg sold for €2.56/kg while Friesians made €1.90-2.11/kg. Apart from a 400kg Belgian Blue that made (€2.65/kg), the bulk of butcher and beef type heifers sold for €1.75-2.05/kg.

Numbers were up at Carnew Mart, where there were 850 cattle on offer. All classes were improved by €20hd, and beef and forward store bullocks made €450-820 over their weight. Light stores sold for €320-650 over.

The best of the weanling bulls made as much as €1,000 over the €1/kg, while the rest sold from €350 over and upwards. Well-fleshed heifers sold for €400-720 with the weight and stores made €320-655 over. Cull cows made €150-630 over and cows with calves at foot sold for €950-1,600/unit.

Both numbers and the trade were up at Dowra Mart, where dry cows made €200-500 with the weight. A good entry of forward store heifers made €300-700 over. Light store bullocks and bull weanlings sold for €250-600 over the €1/kg. A smaller selection of cows with calves at foot made €900-1,400.

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There were 450 cattle on offer at Ballinakill Mart, where some excellent-quality, heavy cattle made up to €795 over.

In general, heavy steers and forward stores sold for €400-750 with the weight. Lighter stores made €300-680 over the €/kg. Beef heifers made €280-550 over and stores sold for €200-420 over.

Export-type heifers around 400kg in weight met a very strong trade at Ballymote Mart and sold up to €500 over the €1/kg.

Store bullocks sold for €300-400 over. Fleshy cows made up to €400 over their weight and cows for further feeding sold for upwards of €150 with the weight.

Indo Farming