Strong quotes as supplies remain 21pc lower than 2011
The Ulster Bank, Ireland's rugby team and the Laois and Westmeath hurlers may all have suffered some form of a meltdown over the past week, but thankfully there is no such disaster on the beef front as quotes and prices remain very strong.
Supplies, or lack of them, is helping the trade. As is the favourable euro/sterling exchange rate and the continuing strong demand for stock.
Supplies remain tight with last week's estimated kill of 23,772hd running at some 6,700hd below 2011 levels. For May the total kill of 117,600hd was 13.1pc down on the 135,400hd killed in May 2011.
For the January to May period, the kill for this year ran at 12.9pc below the kill for the same period in 2011. June will not do anything to close the gap either, with the past three weeks showing an average fall in supplies at the slaughtering plants of approximately 6,200hd/week.
Indeed, the kill for these weeks is 21pc behind last year's levels.
Add in the recent poor weather and you would be forgiven for thinking that if we did get a fine spell, supplies could really tighten up and fall well below their current low levels.
As for quotes and prices, steers seem to remain at a range of 420-425c/kg on the QPS. In-spec R grades are making 432c/kg up in the northwest, with the Us at 444c/kg.
The In-spec R and U grade heifers are at 438c/kg and 450c/kg respectively. I also heard of 425c/kg flat for a mix of R and U grades, while rumour had it that 415-420c/kg flat for good Friesian steers was also being negotiated.