The beef price has fallen for the fifth consecutive week, with a staggering 8% drop since July 22. This fall has resulted in 30c/kg being knocked off factory fit animals during this period.
A differential of approximately €105 now exists between a 350kg steer carcass this week and those slaughtered in the last week of July.
Worryingly, steer price has fallen below the €4/kg mark with many factories now quoting 395c/kg, while 405c/kg is being quoted for the heifers.
Despite this week’s drop in prime beef quotes the cull cow price remains unchanged from last week.
R grade cows are generally unchanged from a base price of 370c/kg.
The price paid for O-type cows has also remained similar to last week’s levels. Quotes for these dairy types are currently sitting at 350c/kg.
P grade cows also remain relatively unchanged with the majority of plants offering 340c/kg for these lots.
This fall in prime beef price now means that a mere 25c/kg differential exists between prime and cull cow beef.
The price difference between Irish and UK beef has also increased, recent figures from the AHDB (the organisation for English beef and lamb) indicate that the R3 steer price in the Britain is currently sitting at 351.9p/kg (482.8c/kg).
On a 350kg steer carcass at current price levels a differential of €307/carcass now exists between Irish and British beef.
According to Bord Bia, the latest price drop has occurred as a result of reduced demand along with a relatively steady supply of cattle coming off grass.
Trade across the main exports markets was also mixed, trade in the UK remains slow on the back of some ease in demand.
However, Bord Bia hopes that the return to work after the holiday season will boost demand, particularly for forequarter cuts.
It also says the French situation remains difficult for exporters due to the suspension of direct trade into retailers. In Italy little change was reported in the trade.
The most recent beef kill figures from the Department of Agriculture indicates that total kill for 2015 is back 41,680 to date on 2014 figures. This is a reduction of approximately 4%.
The total weekly kill stood at 29,660 head which is back by approximately 2,800 head on the same week in 2014.