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Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnanehttps://www.thatsfarming.com/
Catherina Cunnane hails from a sixth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the firm during its start-up phase in 2015.
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Beef trade: ‘Factories know supplies will be extremely tight for the year’

Beef prices August 2021

Despite some beef factories offering lower quotes this week, market conditions “remain favourable”.

That is according to IFA’s Brendan Golden, who advised farmers to ignore the negative propaganda from factories.

He said meat plants and their agents are intent on trying to “undermine the market”.

Beef prices August 2021

According to Golden, steers are making €4.20/kg-€4.25/kg (base price) this week with €4.25/kg for heifers.

He reported that demand for young bulls is “steady” with quotes ranging from €4.10 to €4.30/kg for R and U grades.

Golden also noted that cow prices are “steady” with P grades to €3.60/kg in “most factories”.

Meanwhile, he added that O grades are “generally” coming in at €3.70/kg and R and U grades are making €3.80 to €4.00/kg.

He advised farmers to move cattle as they become fit to ensure they “keep control of the supply/demand balance”.

40,000 fewer cattle

Bord Bia predicts that cattle supplies for the remainder of the year will be back by up to 40,000 head compared to last year.

In the UK, supplies are running below last year’s levels by 5%, and this is forecast to continue for the year.

Golden said GB prices have “strengthened consistently” since mid-May. Furthermore, EU young bull prices are also “edging upwards”, highlighting the demand for beef in Ireland’s main markets.

The IFA livestock chairman said the latest Prime Irish Composite price is €4.23/kg, compared to the EU Prime Export Benchmark price of €4.06/kg, with the Export Benchmark Price increasing by 3c/kg on the week.

“Factories know supplies will be extremely tight for the year. Demand for Irish beef will be strong, and prices must reflect this favourable market situation,” he concluded.

Beef prices in Northern Ireland 

According to the Livestock and Commission (LMC), base quotes for in-spec U-3 grade steers and heifers “remained steady” last week.

Factory quoted 384-394p/kg for this category, while quotes for good quality O+3 grade cows ranged from 280-302p/kg.

“The NI deadweight trade for prime cattle came under pressure last week with the majority of grades decreasing from the previous week.

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