Despite three weeks of relative beef price stability the country’s beef plants have cut the base price by 5c/kg.

Many industry sources have cited the increased numbers of cattle coming forward as the primary cause for this price cut.

The majority of beef plants are now quoting 390c/kg for base steers and 400c/kg for heifers, these prices have fallen from 395c/kg and 405c/kg respectively.

The majority of plants are now sitting at 360/kg for R grade cows, with some plants offering 350c/kg for these lots.

The plainer type dairy culls have also fallen slightly with plants quoting 340-350c/kg for the O type lots.

The poorer P type cows are making 330-335c/kg while P grade cows with flesh are making up to 340c/kg.

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Beef kill running 50,000 head behind 2014 levels

This year’s beef kill at export meat plants is currently running 50,000 head behind 2014 levels, last weeks beef kill stood at 31,212 head, figures from the Department of Agriculture show.

The cumulative beef kill to August 7 stood at 1.10m head which fell from 1.15m for the same period in 2014.

Compared to the same week last year, the beef kill is down  2,721 head from 33,933, it says.

These latest figures from the Department show that steer throughput to meat factories for the week of August 7 were down from the same week last year, with 16,963 head going to factories compared to 15,756 last year.

There was a throughput of 7,235 heifers to factories last week, this was down from 7,851 from the corresponding period last year, figures show.

Export markets

Figures from the AHDB (the organisation for British beef and lamb) shows that the British R3 beef price sits at 361p/kg (494c/kg) which has increased 3p/kg on previous weeks.

This increase in UK beef price and the corresponding fall in the Irish steer price now means that a €1.04/kg now exists between Irish and UK beef.

According to Bord Bia, there has been some increase in the UK trade on the back of seasonal demand increases.

UK demand for steak cuts and topsides remains steady with demand best for forequarter beef, it says.

In France, there has been little change in the trade on the back of recent protests.

Bord Bia says that French retailers are still reluctant to stock imported product but the foodservice is still buying Irish produce.

The trade remained relatively stagnant in Italy after a recent heatwave, it says.