Looking at the calf trade over the past week, there seems to be no reduction in prices at marts. In fact from speaking to mart managers, if anything, the prices for some classes of beef-sired calves received a boost.

One may suggest that the bank holiday weekend would have aided the availability of more customers to contest the bidding earlier in the week. Another factor is the drop in calf numbers across some marts over the past week or so.

Exporters are still keen and showing their presence in a number of online auctions, so for the dairy farmers selling the ‘shipping-type’ calf, this can be seen as a positive.

This week, Agriland takes a look at the recent sales held at Bandon, Carnaross, Ennis and Kilrush Marts.

Bandon Mart

Bandon Mart played host to 1,127 calves this week at its sale held on Monday (May 3).

Speaking this week to Agriland about the trade of calves in the south of the country, mart manager Sean Dennehy explained:

“The strong Friesian bull calves were not as plentiful this week, but the export-type of Friesian bull was selling at €80-120/head.

“A selection of Friesian heifer calves sold from €170/head up to €360/head.

“Angus and Hereford bulls were generally selling at €135-275/head, with prices peaking at €450/head.

“Angus and Hereford heifer calves were selling at €110-225/head – with prices for these fetching up to €340/head.

“We didn’t have too many continental calves on offer in comparison to the Angus and Hereford, but these calves started off at €250/head and topped at €475/head for bulls and €430/head for heifers,” Sean concluded.

Carnaross Mart

There was close to 700 head of calves entered into Carnaross Mart’s ring for the bank holiday Monday (May 3) sale held this week.

Agriland spoke with manager Jimmy O’Reilly to get an insight into how calves were trading around the county of Meath this week. He stated:

“Overall, I have to say that calf prices are holding strong here and there has been no let up in demand from either farmers and exporters.

“The Hereford calf is proving to command a good trade and both bulls and heifers were ranging from prices of €180/head up to highs of €455/head for a strong Hereford bull.

“The Angus calves are also holding their own with general prices ranging from €380/head back to the €200/head mark.

“We had a few Belgian Blue calves selling from €200/head up to €260-280/head – while Charolais calves were topped at €475 for a strong heifer,” Jimmy concluded.

Calf trade in Ennis and Kilrush Marts

At Ennis Mart on Tuesday (May 4), Martin McNamara reported that calves met a strong trade. He stated:

“A few strong Friesian bull calves made up to €235/head. Angus calves sold from €130/head up to €270/head. Hereford calves made from €150/head up to €375/head.

“A strong and aged Charolais bull made €680 and a Limousin bull made to €645.”

At Kilrush Mart on Wednesday (May 5) calf prices also seemed to be holding their own.

Friesian bull calves were selling from €80/head up to €145/head. Angus calves were auctioned from €100/head up to prices of €170/head, while the Hereford calves made from €135/head up to €365/head.