The value of Irish beef in comparison to Ireland’s main markets has now moved well past the €4.00/kg base price, and this must be the immediate target.
That is according to IFA president Tim Cullinan, who said there are no excuses left for factories failing to return the value of the market in beef prices.
The UK price has risen by 8c/kg in the past week. Supermarket demand, the anticipated re-opening of the food-service sector; and “extremely” tight cattle supplies have influenced trade.
The latest Prime Export Tracker Price is €3.87/kg, with Ireland’s price lagging by 12c/kg at €3.75/kg.
The farm leader said the numbers of cattle here are not meeting demand from the marketplace. Therefore, “immediate” and “substantial price rises are justified”.
“It is time to call a halt to the control meat factories have exerted on beef prices over the past number of weeks and make them pay the market returns,” he said.
Irish beef price – Up to €3.95/kg for heifers
IFA livestock chairman, Brendan Golden, said the blatant profiteering of meat factories off the back of farmers in a surging beef market must stop.
He stressed that the Minister for Agriculture has a role in ensuring Irish farmers receive their animal’s full market value.
“There is no point in us hearing about how high our standards are and how many markets we can access when the value of these markets is not returned to farmers,” he said.
Furthermore, Golden said the uncertainty of Brexit has been removed, and the new import controls have been pushed out.
“Factories are offering up to €3.90/kg base price for steers and €3.95/kg for heifers. Farmers should sell hard as factories need the cattle,” he concluded.
Beef prices Northern Ireland
Meanwhile, according to the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC), base quotes for in-spec U-3 grade steers and heifers ranged from 362-374p/kg across plants in Northern Ireland this week.
The spokesperson noted that the majority of beef factories quoted 366-374p/kg.
Trade for cows improved this week with quotes for good quality O+3s in the region of 265-290p/kg across plants.
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