Beef trade: Steer and heifer prices remain firm

From reports this week, we see processors holding firm, with quotes for quality assured steers and heifers residing around a base price of €3.60/kg in most factories.

Factories are quoting a steady supply of both steers and heifers this week. Appetite for bulls, again, is not very strong in some places. From the factories which are quoting, it has seen factory pricing between the ranges of €3.30-3.60/kg for U-grading bulls.

“Quality assured” cow numbers being brought forward for slaughter have been reported as being slow in some places.

Again, the cow trade has seen little or no movement in price, with R-grading cows still ranging from €3.15-3.20/kg, while O-grading cows are being quoted at €3.00/kg; P-grading cows are starting out at €2.80-2.90/kg.

Beef Kill

Last week saw an increase of 898 head in the total number of cattle slaughtered in Irish meat processing plants, in comparison to the previous week. The total number of cattle slaughtered amounted to 36,434 head.

Reflecting back to the same week this time last year, there have been 1,152 fewer animals processed in meat plants.

Young bull throughput saw a slight rise last week – with a total of 1,435 head processed. Aged bulls also saw a rise last week. Aged bull throughput amounted to 659 head last week which was an increase of 109 head from the week before.

Heifer throughput amounted to 9,703 head; again this represented an increase of 259 additional heifers brought forward for slaughter.

Continuing the trend, steers experienced a similar rise with an additional 364 steers processed. This brought the total to 17,253 head for the week ending October 11.

Furthermore, the number of cows processed amounted to 7,385 head; this resulted in a slight rise of 111 head in comparison to the previous week.

Examining the cattle throughput to-date this year, a total number of 1,366,210 cattle have been slaughtered.

This is an increase of 33,131 head, compared to this time last year. Comparing this week to the equivalent week last year, the number of heifers and young bulls processed has decreased.

However, the amount of aged bulls, steers and cows slaughtered during the same period has seen significant rises.