Supplies are tight, and factories are actively seeking beef cattle; therefore, this is no reason to accept prices as low as €4.80-€4.90/kg.
That is according to ICSA beef chair, Edmund Graham, who has urged farmers to “demand more” for beef cattle as supplies are scarce.
He claimed that “factories have been conditioning farmers to accept lower prices”.
“Farmers cannot be expected to produce cattle at this time of year for less than €5/kg.”
“However, the real puzzle is whether farmers will be able to finish cattle this winter at all, given the huge escalation in feed costs.”
“In our view, farmers would want contracts at €7.50/kg for next spring to be profitable, and there is no sign of this happening.”
He said that cost of inputs has not dropped, and there are reasons to be “very worried that costs could get worse before they get better”.
The farm group is urging all farmers to “do their sums carefully”.
“Farmers must be paid not only for the beef but also for their time and for the risk they take.”
“There are better options out there than putting massively expensive ration into finishing cattle in a high-cost winter system,” he concluded.
In this article, ICSA animal health and welfare chair, Hugh Farrell, discusses reported additional TB testing requirements.
I am calling on Minister McConalogue and his department officials to explain how they will finance additional TB testing demands facing farmers.
At the TB Forum, ICSA has always been insistent that farmers pay for one annual herd test – and one test only.
However, ICSA, along with other farmer representatives, have been left exasperated by the department’s refusal to engage with us on how any additional mandatory testing would be financed.
That a farmer is responsible for payment for one annual herd test has always been a fundamental principle of the TB Eradication Programme; Minister McConalogue must now step forward and come clean on whether this long-standing principle is to be thrown in the bin.
I am responding to media coverage outlining proposed changes to TB testing requirements to include pre- and post-movement testing.