Beef prices continue to move upwards across plants in Northern Ireland, according to the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC).
The commission reported that base quotes ranged from 362-372p/kg for in spec U-3 grading steers and heifers.
“With the range of quotes, available producer, are encouraged to shop around to get the best possible deal. Quotes for good quality O+3 grading cows have remained steady this week at 265- 280p/kg, with similar quotes expected on Monday.”
The NI plants have reported steady supplies of prime cattle coming forward for slaughter, with throughput last week totalling 6,667 head. This was up by just over 140 head from the previous week and back 486 head compared to the same week last year when 7,153 prime cattle were processed in local plants.
Cow throughput decreased last week with 1,751 cows processed locally. This was back just over 200 cows compared to the same week last year when 1,953 cows were processed locally.
Exports and imports
Imports for direct slaughter from ROI last week increased to 399 prime cattle and 128 cows with no cattle imported from GB for direct slaughter in local plants.
Exports from NI to ROI for direct slaughter last week included 46 cows with no cattle exported from NI to GB last week for direct slaughter.
Last week, the average steer price in NI was slightly back from the previous week at 370.6p/kg with the R3 steer price back by 1.8p/kg to 379.4p/kg.
Meanwhile last week, the average heifer price and R3 heifer price in NI were both marginally up from the previous week to 369.7p/kg and 378.1p/kg, respectively.
The average young bull price was 356.5p/kg, up 1.6p/kg from the previous week with the R3 young bull price up by almost 4p/kg to 367.3p/kg.
The deadweight cow trade in NI “came under pressure” last week with the average NI cow price back 8p/kg to 255.3p/kg and the O3 cow price back 5.3p/kg from the previous week to 279.2p/kg.
In GB last week, the prime cattle trade reported improvements from the previous week across the majority of grades.
The average steer price in GB last week increased by 4.2p/kg to 382.2p/kg with the R3 steer price increasing by a similar margin to 387.9p/kg.
“This increase in the average GB R3 steer price has widened the differential between NI and GB to 8.5p/kg last week.”
“The average heifer price in GB last week improved by 3.2p/kg to 380.5p/kg with the R3 heifer price up by just over 3p/kg to 387.3p/kg. This puts the differential in R3 heifers prices between the regions at 9.2p/kg last week.”
The deadweight cow trade in GB also recorded a strengthening in prices last week with the average cow price up by 2.8p/kg to 262.4p/kg and the O3 cow price up by 3.2p/kg to 283p/kg. According to the LMC, this places it at 3.8p/kg above the O3 cow price in NI.
“Deadweight prime cattle prices in ROI strengthened in euro terms last week. However, a weakening euro against sterling resulted in steer and heifer prices generally decreasing in sterling terms.”
“The R3 steer price was back by 0.8p/kg last week to 327.5p/kg, while the R3 heifer price decreased by 1.6p/kg to 330.5p/kg. Prime cattle throughput in ROI last week totalled 24,250 head, back 12% from 27,580 head processed in the same week last year.” the spokesperson concluded.