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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 prices up following recent downward pressure

NI beef prices October 2021

According to the LMC (Livestock and Meat Commission), the beef trade improved in Northern Ireland this week.

In its weekly market update, it reported that professors paid from 386-394p/kg for in-spec U-3 grade prime cattle with similar quotes expected for early next week.

On the other hand, quotes for O+3 cows ranged from 260-300p/kg. The LMC reported that the majority of plants quoting at the upper end of the scale.

NI beef prices October 2021

“The NI deadweight prime cattle trade generally reported increases last week across the majority of grades from the previous week.”

  • The average NI steer price was up 0.2p/kg to 391.9p/kg, with the R3 steer price up 0.1p/kg to 401.2p/kg. In the same week I last week, the R3 steer price was 367.1p/kg.
  • The average NI heifer price jumped by 2.4p/kg to 395.5p/kg, while the R3 heifer price was up 0.9p/kg to 402.4p/kg. In the corresponding week in 2020, the R3 heifer price was 367.8p/kg, 34.6p/kg behind current levels.
  • Last week, the average young bull price fell 4.7p/kg to 375.1p/kg, while the R3 young bull price was back 2.7p/kg to the equivalent of 386.6p/kg.
  • Meanwhile, the cow trade in NI “came under pressure” last week. The LMC reported the average cow price was back 4.3p/kg to 276.7p/kg and the O3 cow price fell 2.7p/kg to 311.3p/kg.
Imports and exports 

Imports for direct slaughter from ROI last week comprised 209 prime cattle and 139 cows, well back when compared to previous weeks.

Meanwhile, no cattle were imported from GB for direct slaughter in local plants. Exports of cattle from NI to ROI for direct slaughter last week included four prime cattle and 91 cows while no cattle were exported to GB for direct slaughter.

“Reports have indicated steady supplies of both prime cattle and cows available for slaughter.”

Prime cattle throughput increased last week by 674 head from the previous week to total 7,564 head.

This was the highest weekly prime cattle throughput to date in 2021. Cow throughput in NI last week reached 2,366 head, up 111 head from 2,255 cows killed the week prior to this.

Beef prices in GB

The LMC added that the deadweight prime cattle trade also “came under some pressure” last week in GB.

  • The average steer price in GB fell 0.1p/kg to 409.6p/kg, while the R3 steer price was up 1.1p/kg to 417.5p/kg.
  • Meanwhile, the average heifer price was back 1.5p/kg to 406.4p/kg, with the R3 heifer price down a penny to 416.3p/kg. “This places the R3 heifer price in GB at 13.9p/kg “above the same price in NI,” it pointed out.
  • Last week in GB, the LMC added, the deadweight cow trade “continued to remain under pressure,” with prices back in the region of 2- 4p/kg from the previous week. The average cow price fell 3.5p/kg to 267.6p/kg, while the O3 cow price was back 4.1p/kg to 296.1p/kg.

The LMC reported that deadweight trade for prime cattle in ROI “came under pressure” this week across the majority of grades.

“The R3 steer price in ROI last week was back 2.8p/kg to 354.7p/kg, which brings the R3 steer price differential between ROI and NI to 46.5p/kg.”

“Meanwhile, the R3 heifer price was back 2.6p/kg to the equivalent of 358.7p/kg. The O3 cow price in ROI was back 2.9p/kg to 300.5p/kg,” the LMC concluded.

See more beef price updates.

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