‘Supermarket shelves are empty’: Beef farmers urged to hold out for more

Farmers are being called on to look for higher beef prices this week from factories by Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers’ Association (ICSA) beef chairman Edmund Graham.

Urging farmers, Graham said: “Supermarket shelves are empty and factories will be under pressure to get beef moving to supermarket distribution centres.

“Factory supplies are low following the bad weather and farmers with numbers of cattle are in a strong position to get a price above the typical quotes available over the past few weeks.

“The reality is that winter finishers have endured a long, hard winter and the prices available this spring have been totally inadequate to cover the costs involved,” the beef chairman said.

The empty supermarket shelves show that farmers are the vital link in the food chain and it is time to demand a price that reflects the importance of the job we do.

Graham also noted that the recent weather puts the food chain into perspective, saying: “Consumers who take cheap food for granted need to realise that they are only ever a few days away from a food scarcity panic and that the supermarket model of squeezing the farmer is barely sustainable.”

1,800 bulls to sail to Turkey

Approximately 1,800 bulls, destined for Turkish shores, will be loaded either today or tomorrow, AgriLand understands. The consignment of bulls, weighing 400-800kg, will leave Greenore Port, Co. Louth, once loaded.

A contract is understood to have been agreed between Viastar – the Meath-based exporter – and private Turkish buyers.

AgriLand has also learned that there are plans for further boats – possibly one per month – to leave Irish shores bound for Turkey. This will be welcome news, as live exports are extremely important for the Irish beef industry going forward.