Base quotes from major processors in Northern Ireland remained steady this week ranging from 322-328p/kg for in-spec U-3 grade prime cattle, according to the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC).
The majority of plants are quoting 326-328p/kg for both steers and heifers. The cow trade also remained steady this week with quotes for O+3 grading cows at 230-256p/kg across plants.
Similar quotes are expected for all types of cattle early next week, the LMC outlined.
Prime cattle throughput has remained strong in local plants with 7,019 prime cattle killed last week; this was back 78 head from the previous week.
In the same week last year, prime cattle throughput in NI was 7,727 head.
Imports of cattle from ROI for direct slaughter last week consisted of 227 prime cattle and 32 cows with a further 150 cows and three steers imported for direct slaughter from GB.
Exports of cattle out of NI for direct slaughter to ROI last week consisted of nine prime cattle and 37 cows with no cattle exported to GB.
“The deadweight trade in NI for prime cattle continued to show signs of improvement last week.” the LMC said.
“The average steer price in NI last week was up half-a-penny to 323.5p/kg while the R3 steer price was up by a similar margin to 333.1p/kg.”
The LMC noted that the average heifer price reported an increase of 2.3p/kg to 328.9p/kg in NI last week, with the R3 heifer price up by a similar margin to 336.6p/kg. The R3 heifer price last week recorded an increase in Scotland (+0.5p/kg), Northern England (+4.5p/kg) and the Midlands (+2.4p/kg) with a slight decrease reported in the Republic of Ireland (-0.3p/kg), the LMC added.
The average young bull price in NI last week increased by 0.4p/kg to 308.6p/kg while the R3 young bull price decreased by 2.8p/kg to 318.5p/kg.
It said that the cow trade also improved last week in NI with the average and O3 cow prices both increasing by 3.1p/kg to 225.5p/kg and 252.1p/kg respectively.
"The deadweight trade for prime cattle also improved in GB last week with the average steer price up 1.3p/kg to 326.7p/kg."
“In ROI last week, prime cattle deadweight prices came under pressure in both euro and sterling terms when compared to the previous week.”
“The R3 steer price decreased 1.8p/kg to the equivalent of 294.3p/kg while the R3 heifer price was back by a penny of 301.9p/kg.”
“However, the deadweight cow trade in ROI improved with the O3 cow price up by the equivalent of 1.4p/kg to 222.8p/kg last week.” the LMC concluded.