While the differential in R3 steer prices between Northern Ireland and the Britain average has narrowed in recent weeks the differential between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland has widened according to the Livestock and Meat Commission in Northern Ireland.
It says the differential in R3 steer prices between Northern Ireland and the Republic has been gradually widening since June however the strong increase in Northern Ireland prices in recent weeks has further increased the differential. The differential in R3 steer prices last week was the equivalent of 65.8p/kg (82c/kg) or £277 for a 330kg carcase.
According to the LMC quotes from the plants in Northern Ireland this week for U-3 grade steers and heifers steadied at 350-352p/kg with similar quotes expected for early next week.
It says quotes for good quality O+3 cows ranged from 240-260p/kg across the plants with the plants reporting steady supplies of all types of cattle to meet demand.
Prime cattle throughput in Northern Ireland last week totalled 7,200 head last week, an increase of 538 head from the previous week. This is the highest weekly throughput of prime cattle since the week commencing May 24, 2014.
Imports of prime cattle from the Republic for direct slaughter in NI plants last week were similar to the previous week with 628 head imported. This accounted for 9% of the prime cattle kill in Northern Ireland last week.