Weanling throughput in marts has experienced a sharp increase in the last week.
Deteriorating weather conditions are adding to the normal seasonal increase in weanling sales, with many special sales in the west already close to or already booked out for a week to ten days in advance of the sale.
Keen demand has seen prices paid for bull weanlings firm up in the last two weeks. MartWatch analysis shows prices for good quality R and U grading bulls at similar levels to the same week last year.
R+ and U grading bulls in the 300kg to 400kg bracket are selling from €2.35 to €2.80/kg or from €822 to €980 on a 350kg animal.
The trade is being helped by a strengthening live export trade. Bord Bia analysis shows the number of weanlings exported live to Italy, for the week ending 22 September, at 1,369 head, only marginally behind the same week last year (1,592).
Joe Burke, Bord Bia, explained that Irish weanlings have become more competitive in export markets with weanling prices in France increasing to over €3/kg which is putting a floor under the market.
Irish U+ grading Belgian Blue bulls are selling from €2.80 to €3.20/kg with very heavily muscled bulls weighing 300kg to 400kg rising to €3.50/kg or even higher.
Weight has also become less of an issue with exporters paying €2.30 to €2.60 for 450kg plus U grading Belgian Blue bulls.
Trade is much more difficult for dairy bred weanling bulls, with prices running 10c to 15c/kg behind last year's levels.
Friesian bulls are in general selling from €1.40 to €1.80/kg with P grading bulls weighing lower than 300kg selling back to €1.20/kg in cases.
A strong live trade to Northern Ireland is helping sales in marts in the midlands and north, with exports running on par to last year's levels.
The number of cattle exported north for direct slaughter has also reached its highest level for over two years at 1,443 head.
Source: Argentine Beef Packers S.A.
Back to News Headlines