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Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane
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: Quotes ‘steady’ in north

An update on factory prices Northern Ireland from the Livestock and Meat Commission

Base quotes for in-spec U-3 grade prime cattle remained “steady” across plants in Northern Ireland this week.

That is according to the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC), which reported that most factories quoted 362-370p/kg for steers and heifers.

Meanwhile, quotes for good quality O+3 grade cows continued to range from 265-280p/kg across the plants. Similar quotes are expected for all types of cattle early next week, the commission stated.


Prime cattle throughput in NI last week increased to 6,730 head last week This brought the prime cattle throughput in February to 27,081 head, back 4.5% when compared to February 2020.

In February, the average carcase weight of prime cattle was 347.4kg, up almost 2kg compared to the corresponding period last year.

Meanwhile, a total of 2,002 cows were slaughtered in NI last week, up by 94 cows from the previous week.

The inclusion of last week’s kill brings the throughput of cows in February to 7,447 head. This is back 381 head from the 7,828 cows processed in the same month in 2020.

The average cow carcase weight for February was 313.6kg, back 1.3kg when compared to the same period in 2020.

Exports and imports

Imports of prime cattle from ROI for direct slaughter in NI plants last week consisted of 221 prime cattle and 66 cows,

No cattle were imported from GB for direct slaughter. Exports of cattle out of NI for direct slaughter to ROI last week consisted of 7 heifers and 44 cows. No cattle made the journey from NI to GB for direct slaughter.

Factory prices Northern Ireland 

Last week, the average NI steer price was back 1.4p/kg to 369.3p/kg from the previous week. The R3 steer price decreased by a penny to 378.3p/kg.

In the corresponding week in 2020, the reported R3 steer price was 339.6p/kg.

The average heifer price in NI last week was up 1.2p/kg to 371.3p/kg. The R3 heifer price increased by 0.4p/kg to 378.8p/kg.

In the same week last year, the R3 heifer price was 341.3p/kg. The average NI young bull price last week decreased by 2.8p/kg to 354.1p/kg. The R3 young bull price increased by a penny to 369.6p/kg.

Meanwhile, last week, the average cow price in NI increased by just under a penny to 259.4p/kg. Besides,, the O3 cow price decreased by 1.2p/kg to 281p/kg from the previous week.


In GB last week, the average steer price increased by 2.5p/kg to 376.8p/kg. The R3 steer price was up just under a penny to 382p/kg.

According to the commission, this has widened the differential in R3 steer prices last week between NI and GB to 3.7p/kg.

The average heifer price in GB last week increased by almost 2p/kg to 376p/kg. The R3 heifer price decreased by 0.8p/kg to 380.9p/kg.

The commission noted that this puts the differential in R3 heifer prices last week between NI and GB at just over 2p/kg.

The cow trade in GB improved last week with the O3 cow price up by almost 5p/kg to 278.1p/kg, 2.9p/kg below the O3 cow price in NI.


In ROI last week, the R3 steer price was back by the equivalent of 2.3p/kg
when compared to the previous week to 325.6p/kg, widening the differential with NI to 52.7p/kg.

Meanwhile, the R3 heifer price decreased by 1.4p/kg to 329.6p/kg which puts it 49.2p/kg lower than the same price in NI.

The O3 cow price in ROI was back by a penny to 256.8p/kg, 24.2p/kg behind the O3 cow price in NI.

See more beef prices.

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