The cattle trade has eased slightly on previous weeks, according to the Country’s mart managers with plainer lots more difficult to sell.

Beef cattle generally sold €1.33-2.79/kg while the poorer quality stores sold from €1.60-1.80/kg while the better quality lots traded to a tops of €2.94-3.02/kg.

Despite the fall in prices for heavier cattle the trade for weanlings remains relatively good with bull and heifer weanlings making from €2.53-3.22/kg and €2.55-3.65/kg respectively as weanling export numbers continue to fall.

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There was a large sale of cattle in Balla Mart on Saturday with 1,350 lots passing through the ring, according to the Mart Manager Michael Murphy.

According to Murphy, the trade for store cattle remained strong particularly for the store steers weighing greater than 400kg, he added that there was also a large entry of in-calf heifers on offer.

The trade for store steers remained good, said Murphy, with the hammer falling on these lots from €1.66-2.94/kg or €600-810.

There was a large number of heavier steers on offer and but despite this these lots remained in good demand and generally sold from €1.33-2.65/kg, despite a fall in the national beef kill.

According to Murphy, heifers which were suitable for breeding were up by €20-30/head on the previous week and traded for €1.94-3.02/kg or €600-900 over.

The best of the heavy heifers on offer sold to a tops of €1,000 over, he said, which was an improvement on previous weeks. These lots generally made €1.72-2.79/kg.

According to Murphy, there were 240 cows on offer on Saturday, the best in-calf heifer which was due to calve in February made €2,090 while cull cows generally made €1.58-2.30/kg.

There was increased farmer activity for all lots on offer in Mountbellew Mart on Friday, according to the Mart Manager, Marianne Higgins.

According to Higgins, there was a large entry of cattle and store steers weighing in the region of 400-500kg made €2.48-2.62/kg while the heavier lots traded from €2.01-2.36/kg.

Heifers also remained in good demand and store lots weighing in the region of 400-500kg sold for €2.29-2.36/kg, added Higgins.

The Mart Manager added that weanlings were a firmer trade on the previous week with increased prices achieved for quality lots, weanling bulls made €2.53-2.91/kg while their counterpart heifers sold for €2.55-3.65/kg.

The cattle trade was a little easier in Kilkenny Mart for the 1,080 cattle on Thursday, according to the Mart Manager, Michael Lynch, with a quiter trade for plainer lots.

According to Lynch, the prices achieved for the better quality cattle had also reduced and these animals were not commanding the same returns as a month ago.

Over age cattle remained hard to sell, heavy steers generally made €1.80-2.40/kg, store steers (400-500kg) sold for €1.60-2.70/kg while lighter lots made €1.60-2.51/kg.

According to Lynch, beef heifers traded from €1.80-2.45/kg or €550-965 over while the foward store heifers made €1.80-2.65/kg and lots weighing below 400kg made €1.70-2.35/kg.

Cull cows met with a steady selling trade, continental cull cows made €1.40-2.05/kg with the Friesian type culls made €0.80-1.75/kg, added Lynch.

There was a good cattle trade in Macroom Mart on Saturday, according to the Mart Manager John O’Mahony and this was reflected in the prices achieved.

The best of the early maturing Angus and Hereford steers traded from €210-600 over or €2.34-2.38/kg while the better quality continentals made €235-755 over or €2.48-2.54/kg.

The Mart Manager added that heifers generally made from €220-645 over or €2.25-2.32/kg.

There was also a good trade for weanlings, weanling bulls traded from €2.82-3.22/kg while the heifer counterparts made from €2.70-2.80/kg, added O’Mahony.

O’Mahony added that dry cows made from €75 under to €745 over or €1.65-2.00/kg.