Joe Healy, the president of the Irish Farmers Association (IFA), has welcomed this evening’s launch of the much-anticipated new Beef Price Index published by Bord Bia.
In a statement, Healy said the index – which is now live on the Irish Food Board’s website – shows that the beef market is improving and that farmers must get “an immediate price increase”.
It also compares Irish beef prices with a new ‘European benchmark’ price for prime cattle based on a weighted average of cattle prices in Ireland’s main export markets.
There is a clear gap of 17c/kg between the new European (prime export benchmark) price and Irish prices, which has opened up since early August. This is unacceptable.
“The new indices will provide greater transparency on cattle and beef prices and help to keep the factories honest in terms of market trends.
“This is the first version and I’m sure it will be further refined as we go along.
“The latest data shows that Irish farmers can now justifiably demand and expect an immediate price increase,” he said.
“The index will provide greater transparency on cattle and beef prices and keep the factories honest in terms of market trends. This is the first version and I’m sure it will be further refined as we go along,” he said.
The IFA leader highlighted that one of the biggest complaints coming from beef farmers relates to the lack of up-to-date information about the price of beef in the sector’s main markets.
This index will equip farmers with comprehensive details about beef price trends and arm them with market data when they are selling cattle.
“The new price index also includes a monthly ‘Wholesale/Retail Beef Price Index’, which again shows that for the month from September to October these prices across the UK and EU markets increased,” he said.
The index also includes a ‘By-Product Market Indicator’, which tracks changes in the values of hides and offal.
Currently this is showing a value equivalent to 29c/kg, which is up marginally from its low point in June of 25c/kg.