Cattle numbers continued to increase across the country this week, with a much more positive atmosphere reported despite poor factory quotes and Brexit uncertainty.
Managers said quality lots increased by €20-€50/head this week, while demand is poor for light-weight cattle and those with strong dairy-influence.
More farmer customers made their presence felt at the ringside this week, while Northern buyers actively seeking good-quality store heifers.
There was strong demand for good quality stores and Continental weanlings this week; these met with an improved trade.
Suck calf numbers are increasing, with FR bulls selling from €20/head; €190 was recorded for a FR bull at Kilkenny Mart on Tuesday (February 5th), with “exporters keeping a floor on prices” according to George Candler.
Some 500 cattle were on offer at Castlerea Mart on Thursday (February 7th), with an improved trade all-round for all categories, according to Brendan Egan – Manager.
“Improved farmer activity this week, as well as feedlots agents and Northern customers, led to an improved trade this week, resulting in a good clearance.” The manager of the Roscommon-based venue said – see more here.
With more purchasers making their presence felt at the ringside, there was a lift in prices all-round at Kilkenny Mart on Thursday (January 7th), according to George Candler.
The mart’s auctioneer said most lots increased by €20-€40/head, while some quality Continentals improved by €50/head; some 550 lots went under the hammer.
Light Continental bulls peaked at €3.12/kg, with forward-stores topping out at €2.65/kg; heifers climbed to €2.55/kg, while up to €2.00/kg was recorded in the cull cow ring.
“The reason for the increase is hard to fathom but perhaps some farmers now feel they have sufficient feed to see them through this winter and, in cases, the appearance of grass is an encouraging sign.”
“There is also the suggestion that when grass becomes plentiful, prices may increase significantly.” The auctioneer said – read more here.
Numbers are beginning to increase in all rings at Ennis Mart with Tuesday’s sale – which was held on February 5th – attracting some quality bull and heifer weanlings, according to a spokesperson.
“Farmers, specialised bull feeders and shipper were competing in the bull ring and mostly farmers in the heifer ring. Trade improved €20/head all-round.” The spokesperson added.
Suckler pairings fetched up to €2,400 while in-calve lots made up to €1,670 and dairy stock ranged from €950 to €1,210.
The spokesperson said the numbers of calves coming on stream are increasing, with Friesian bulls selling from €60 to €90 and Continentals making up to €480 – sample prices can be found here.
Some 500 entries including 130 cull cows passed through the ring at Kilmallock Mart on Monday (February 4th), according to a mart spokesperson.
“The improvement in price last week was maintained this week.” The spokesperson said.
Bullocks sold for up to €1040/head or €2.03 per kg and weanling bulls made up to €890/head or €2.72 per kg while dry cows hit €950/head or €1.54 per kg. Heifers climbed to €1050/head or €2.29 per kg, while weanling heifers fetched up to €595 each or €2.06 per kg and dairy stock realised €1480/head.
Moving to the other rings, up to €370 was forked out for young 2019-born calves, while a suckler pairing was knocked down at €1200 – find more here.