Turkish exporters continue to search for high-quality heifers, mart managers across the country have reported. Many managers have also described the trade as being “firm and very busy”.

Balla mart

There was a very good trade for the 200-400kg heifers on offer at last Saturday’s, June 24, sale in Balla mart, the mart’s Anthony Murphy said.

Some 200 lots of heifers were entered in total, he said, and the trade for light heifers had improved on the previous week’s sale due to the presence of exporters.

A large number of light heifers, under 13-months-old, are required in the next two weeks to fill a boat being exported for Turkish buyers; Limousins and Belgian Blues are preferable.

Heifers weighing up to 400kg averaged €2.52/kg, but lots suitable for export made €3.10/kg. Heifers weighing 400-500kg averaged €2.30/kg and those in the 500kg+ division averaged slightly more at €2.32/kg.

Moving on to steers, those weighing up to 400kg averaged €2.69/kg and the heavier lots on offer (400-500kg) traded for an average price of €2.38/kg.

There were some quality cattle on display in the 500kg+ division, he said, and a 685kg Charolais-cross born in July 2015 sold for €1,640.

Sample steer prices:
  • Limousin: 290kg – €900 or €3.10/kg;
  • Limousin: 390kg – €1,050 or €2.69/kg;
  • Charolais: 465kg – €1,235 or €2.66/kg;
  • Charolais: 595kg – €1,540 or €2.59/kg;
  • Charolais: 685kg – €1,640 or €2.39/kg.

In total, 127 cows passed through the ring. According to Murphy, the best price was paid for a four-year-old Belgian Blue cow with a Charolais calf at foot. This pair made €1,960. A Limousin dry cow weighing 910kg made €1,850 (€2.03/kg).

Raphoe mart

There was a “brisk” trade with lots of activity around the ring during last Thursday’s sale in Raphoe Mart, according to the mart’s manager Anne Harkin.

“All types of cattle sold well due to a high demand,” Harkin said.

Bullocks sold for €2.10-2.80/kg or €570 to €650 over. Bulls sold for slightly more and traded at €2.20-3.10/kg. In addition, heifers made €2.20-2.85/kg and fat cows sold for €600 to €1,290 each.

Sample prices:
  • Beef bullocks: €570 to €650 over;
  • Beef heifers: €575 to €915 over;
  • Store heifers: €350 to €860 over;
  • Dry cows: €600 to €1,290 each.

Castlerea mart

There were 430 lots of cattle on offer at last Thursday’s sale in Castlerea Mart, Brendan Egan, the mart manager, said.

This was a small number compared to other weeks and Egan believes it was down to farmers making hay and silage.

The trade remained firm for most of the classes of stock on offer, he said, and the best-quality lots available for sale met a very good trade.

Store and weanling heifers attracted most attention with the top-quality lots recording some fancy prices, while the bullocks and weanling bulls reported similar prices to last week.

Sample prices:
  • Belgian Blue: 470kg – €1,305;
  • Limousin: 410kg – €1,055;
  • Charolais: 500kg – €1,330;
  • Charolais: 580kg – €1,330;
  • Charolais cross: 640kg – €1,450;
  • Charolais: 715kg – €1,535.

Cows with calves at foot sold for €800 to €2,000, with the number of calves on offer starting to decline. Calves sold for €230 to €695, with the higher prices being achieved for the stronger, runner-type animals.

Sample weanling heifer prices:
  • Charolais: 290kg – €885;
  • Simmental: 290kg – €870;
  • Limousin: 270kg – €850;
  • Limousin: 330kg – €1,090;
  • Charolais: 340kg – €1,035;
  • Limousin: 300kg – €920.

Ennis mart

Trade was “firm” during last Thursday’s sale in Ennis mart, according to Danny Moran.

“Light stores sold for €2.32/kg up to €3.26/kg, forward stores over 500kg sold for €2.20-2.64/kg and heavier bullocks (over 650kg) sold for up to €2.47/kg.

“The heifer trade was improved for better quality heavy types, but the quality on offer was mixed. Store heifers sold for €2.14-2.59/kg, forward heifers sold between €2.10/kg and €2.46/kg,” Moran added.

Sample bullock prices:
  • Four Limousin crosses: 347kg – €1,050 or €3.02/kg;
  • Five Charolais crosses: 477kg – €1,305 or €2.74/kg;
  • One Charolais cross: 545kg – €1,390 or €2.55/kg;
  • One Belgian blue: 405kg – €1,130 or €2.79/kg;
  • Two Simmental crosses: 575kg – €1,340 or €2.33/kg.

Sample heifer prices:
  • Three Limousin crosses: 385kg – €970 or €2.52/kg;
  • Two Limousin crosses: 425kg – €1,100 or €2.59/kg;
  • One Limousin: 670kg – €1,580 or €2.36/kg;
  • One Charolais cross: 495kg – €1,200 or €2.42/kg;
  • One Limousin cross: 585kg – €1,440 or €2.46/kg;
  • One Simmental cross: 665kg – €1,610 or €2.42/kg.