Despite the processors trying to exert downward pressure on beef prices during the week, the mart trade remained unscathed with strong demand and prices reported all round.
Heavy well-fleshed continental cull cows made €2-2.20/kg in some of the sales yards. Suckler heifers and young cows scanned in-calf made €1,500-2,000/hd, while the quality cows with a calf at foot sold up to and over the €2,000 mark.
Any type of reasonable bullock, heifer or weanling made more than €2/kg, with better quality types at €2.20-2.50/kg. Suck calves are experiencing an extremely strong trade. Despite the super levy still very much a reality, dairy stock is commanding good interest.
Dairy heifers and young cows on the point of calving at Kilmallock Mart sold for €1,600-1,750. A clearance sale of dairy cows starting to calf in a month's time made up to €1,560. At yesterday's calf sale, Friesian bull calves born this month made €225-300.
Friesian bull calves at Ennis Mart sold for €210-335. Continental bull calves made €400-700, with heifer calves topping out at €550. Light weanling bulls made €2.80-3.18/kg. Heifer weanlings made €2.30-3.03/kg, depending on quality and weight.
A lively trade all round with the small fancy stores fetching great prices was the report from Ballinakill. Heavy steers sold for €2-2.51/kg. Forward stores made €1.95-2.55/kg and lighter steers sold for €1.85-2.65/kg. Heifers fit for slaughter made €1.90-2.40/kg.
There was no change to the trade at Kilkenny Mart. Heavy continental bullocks sold for €2.05-2.24/kg in the main. The 400-600kg steers made €2.10-2.70/kg. Good beef heifers sold for €2-2.33/kg. Butcher types moved for €2-2.45/kg. Stores made €1.95-2.48/kg.
Dowra Mart had 480 cattle on offer last Saturday and trade continued to break new ground. The best of the weanling bulls over 500kg made €2-2.70/kg for the top lots, while bull weanlings of 300-500kg sold for €2.20-3/kg, with some fancy lots under 300kg making €2.50-3.30/kg.
Carnew Mart had 580 cattle on offer. A strong trade for all classes ensured that prices were fully maintained. Heavy bullocks sold for €650-1,050 over. Stores made €420-810 over. Beef heifers sold for €550-900 with the €1/kg, while stores made €410-820 over the weight. The best of the cull cows made up to €1,050 over, while cows in need of further feeding sold back to €250 with the weight.
At Tuam Mart, the steers over 600kg sold for €2.10-2.39/kg, with lighter types at €2.30-2.53/kg. Heifers over 500kg sold for €2.27-2.69/kg. Heifers under this weight made €2.25-2.62/kg. The light weanling bulls up to 300kg traded for €2.44-3.41/kg, while heavier lots moved at €2.51-2.78/kg. Weanling heifers made €2.34-2.62/kg. Cull cows sold up to €1,600.
At Balla Mart, the end of month continental sale was held with more than 1,000 cattle on offer from 250 different owners. In-calf cows and cows with a calf at foot made €1,000-2,000. Bullocks were a good trade and heavy stock averaged €2.17-3.01/kg.
Up in Raphoe, heavy bulls made €720-1,160 with the weight. Beef bullocks sold for €655-1,140 over, with stores at €500-865. Finished heifers sold for €490-870 over. Store heifers made €305-745 over, while cull cows sold for €700-1,550.
On Friday, Raphoe is holding a special sale of cull cows and suckler springers in conjunction with the normal sale.
Store cull cows at Ballymote Mart made €200-400 over, with heavy types at €400-770 over. Suckler cows made €1,080-1,880. Weanling bulls sold for €400-665 with the €1/kg, while heifers moved for €300-680 over the weight.