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Beef prices up close to 30p/kg on last year

Report on NI beef prices for January 2022.

Beef prices across Northern Ireland remained at pre-Christmas levels this week (week ending Friday, January 7th, 2022).

According to the Livestock and Meat Commission, base quotes from processors were “steady” this week.

They ranged from 388-394p/kg for in spec U-3 grade prime cattle, with similar quotes expected early next week for steers and heifers.

This week last year, factories were quoting 360-368p/kg for in-spec U3 grading steers and heifers.

According to the LMC’s market report, quotes for O+3 grade cows ranged from 260-290p/kg.

It reports that most plants quoted at the “upper end of the scale”.

NI beef prices 2022 

According to the LMC,

  • Last week in NI, the average steer price decreased by 0.3p/kg to 396.4p/kg from the previous week. The R3 steer price was back 1.2p/kg to 405.5p/kg. This was up 25.5p/kg from the corresponding week last year, when the R3 steer price in NI was 380p/kg.
  • The average heifer price in NI last week increased by 1.3p/kg to 397.5p/kg. The R3 heifer price was up “marginally” from the previous week to 405.3p/kg. In the corresponding week in 2021, the R3 heifer price was 378.5p/kg, 26.8p/kg behind current levels, which equates to £88 on a 330kg carcase.
  • The average young bull price in NI last week rose by 1.2p/kg to 381p/kg, while the R3 young bull price fell by 3.1p/kg to 390p/kg.
  • Meanwhile, the cow trade in NI firmed last week, with the average cow price up 5.9p/kg from the previous week to 278.2p/kg.
  • The O3 cow price in NI jumped by 2p/kg to 299.8p/kg. This is 23.2p/kg higher than the 276.6p/kg reported in the same week in 2022.
Exports and imports

Imports from ROI for direct slaughter in local plants last week comprised 15 prime cattle and 45 cows.

This brings prime cattle imports from ROI to NI to 14,582 head during the 2021 year.

Furthermore, there were no cattle imported from GB for direct slaughter last week.

Exports from NI to ROI consisted of 17 cows. No cattle made the journey from NI to GB for direct slaughter.

GB beef prices

According to the LMC, the deadweight trade for prime cattle in GB “firmed” last week compared to the previous week.

  • The average steer price reported an increase of 1.8p/kg to 409.1p/kg, while the average R3 steer price increased by 2.5p/kg to 415.7p/kg.
  • The R3 steer price reported increases across all the GB regions last week. The strongest incline of 6.8p/kg was reported in Southern England, bringing this price to 414.7p/kg.
  • The average heifer price in GB last week was 409.3p/kg, up 2.1p/kg from the previous week, while the R3 heifer price increased by 1.6p/kg to 414.5p/kg. “This puts the GB R3 heifer price 9.2p/kg higher than the equivalent price in NI last week. The GB cow trade strengthened last week, with the average cow price up 9.1p/kg to 265.5p/kg and the O3 cow price up 4.2p/kg to 286.9p/kg.”

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