Irish heifer prices were the sixth highest in Europe during the week ending September 18, recent figures from the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC) show.
Farmers in Sweden, Italy, Northern Ireland, Britain and Luxembourg were all paid more than Irish farmers for heifers during the second week of September.
Sweden held the top spot on the LMC’s EU league table of cattle prices, with a price just shy of €5/kg, while beef producers in the UK were paid the second highest price of 427.9c/kg for R3 heifers.
Meanwhile, Luxembourg R3 heifer prices fell by 14.6c/kg between August and September and as a result, the country fell to fifth place in the league price table.
The LMC data also shows that heifer prices in the UK increased by 16.9c/kg during the week ending September to 427.9c/kg, which brings the difference between Irish and UK R3 heifers to 42.7c/kg.
The figures also show that Irish R3 heifers prices fell by 2.8c/kg during the week ending September 18 to an average price of 385.2c/kg, while the Northern Irish price stood at 402c/kg leaving the north/south price differential at 16.8c/kg.
This is a significant increase considering the difference had narrowed to just 3.4c/kg in the week ending August 14.
The figures also show that the EU average price for R3 heifers stood at 377c/kg for the week ending September, putting Irish prices at 102% of the EU average.