Cattle marts: Quality to the fore as plainer cattle prices weaken

There was a good trade for strong steers in Balla Mart on Saturday, according to the Mart’s Anthony Murphy, who said there was some nice cattle on offer.

Murphy said there were more buyers looking for strong steers and as a result the prices paid for these lots were up on last week, while the lighter lots met a similar trade to the previous week’s sale.

He said that store steers weighing around 450kg made €700-800 over or €1.13-3.12/kg, while the heavier steers on offer sold from €1.65-2.84/kg.

Sample steer prices:
  • Charolais: 295kg – €845 or €2.86/kg
  • Charolais: 390kg – €1,155 or €2.96/kg
  • Limousin: 495kg – €1,295 or €2.62/kg
  • Charolais: 675kg – €1,545 or €2.29/kg
  • Charolais: 760kg – €1,655 or €2.18/kg

Murphy also said there was some quality heifers on offer and the store lots averaged from €700-900 over or €1.78-3.06/kg, while the forward store and beef heifers sold from €1.57-2.51/kg.

There was also over 100 cows on offer and a 10-year-old Limousin cow with a Charolais calf at foot topped the sale at €1,450, while dry cows sold from €1.05-2.13/kg.

However, despite the large entry of steers, heifers and cows, Murphy said there was a small sale of weanlings, as many farmers are holding off until the start of the weanling sales in September.

The usual exporters were in attendance, he said, and the weanling bulls on offer traded from €1.85-2.78/kg.

Kilkenny Mart

Plainer cattle met an easier trade in Kilkenny Mart, Cillin Hill on Thursday, according to the Mart Auctioneer George Candler.

Candler said there was 730 cattle on offer, but the number of buyers present around the ring was down compared to the sale held a week earlier, as many farmers were busy finishing weather related jobs.

Along with a fall in plainer cattle prices, the Auctioneer also said cull cow prices had eased, with Friesian cows selling from €0.95-1.50/kg and the better quality continental lots trading from €1.30-1.75/kg.

Looking at steer prices, forward lots weighing 500-600kg sold from €1.70-2.35/kg, while the lighter stores  (400-500kg) made €1.70-2.65/kg or €350-780 over.

Sample steer prices:
  • Limousin: 800kg – €1,880 or €2.35/kg
  • Angus: 790kg – €790 or €1.78/kg
  • Friesian: 580kg – €1,000 or €1.72/kg
  • Charolais: 560kg – €1,410 or €2.52/kg
  • Limousin: 480kg – €1,250 or €2.60/kg
  • Hereford: 475kg – €1,060 or €2.23/kg
  • Angus: 325kg – €640 or €1.97/kg
  • Hereford: 310kg – €610 or €1.97/kg

There was also a selection of heifers on offer on Thursday, beef heifers sold from €1.80-2.50/kg, while the forward store classes traded from €1.90-2.45/kg or €400-780 over and the lighter store lots made €2.00-2.65/kg.

Sample heifer prices:
  • Charolais: 575kg – €1,280 or €2.23/kg
  • Angus: 560kg – €1,170 or €2.09/kg
  • Charolais: 535kg – €1,300 or €2.43/kg
  • Hereford: 550kg – €1,090 or €1.98/kg
  • Limousin: 490kg – €1,130 or €3.21/kg
  • Hereford: 495kg – €1,010 or €2.04/kg
  • Limousin: 395kg – €1,040 or €2.63/kg
  • Charolais: 370kg – €920 or €2.49/kg
  • Belgian Blue: €820 or €2.25/kg

Raphoe Mart

There was more cattle on offer in Raphoe Mart’s cattle sale on Thursday, according to the Mart Manager Anne Harkin.

Harkin said that good quality cattle continued to remain in demand from factory agents, with top class bulls selling from €600-775 over, beef steers made €2.20-2.70/kg and heifers traded from €2.30-2.70/kg.

However, she said that plainer cattle met a tougher trade and this was reflected in the prices paid to farmers, with store steers and heifers making €350-630 over and €420-830 over respectively.

Prices from Raphoe Mart:
  • Bulls over 600 kg:  €600-775 over
  • Beef steers: €680-790 over
  • Store steers: €420-830 over
  • Beef heifers: €500-805 over
  • Store heifers: €350-630 over
  • Dry cows: €605-1430 each

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