There an old saying never kick a man when he is down but it could be said that the factories are doing exactly that in reducing the quotes for beef and lamb.
It could be said that the market is challenging but on the beef front quotes in mainland UK even though they are under pressure are still well ahead of what the Irish farmer is getting. The reduction in sterling has meant that lamb prices have also come under pressure as UK sheep producer now finds his product is more attractive on the European Market. Uncertainty is the problem for the livestock producer at the moment with the signposts very unclear.
On Thursday we had 1,100 head on offer with quality Continental bullocks peaking at €2.60 per kilo. Bullocks under 400 kilo averaged €1.90 per kilo with a top price of €2.60 per kilo. Steers ranging from 400 to 500 kilo averaged €1.85 per kilo with a top price of €2.45 per kilo.
Forward store bullocks ranging from 500 to 600 kilo came in at an average of €1.90 per kilo with a top call of €2.40 per kilo. The heavy bullocks over 600 kilo recorded the smallest top call of €2.05 per kilo and an average of €1.95 per kilo. In the cow section continentals peaked at €1.85 per kilo with Friesian cows to a top €1.55 per kilo. In the heifer section the average price was €1.90 per kilo with a top call of €2.45 per kilo. These prices show a reduction of €150 to €300 per head on the same sale in October 2015.
Due to Bank Holiday Monday our sheep sale this week was held on Tuesday in conjunction with our weanling sale. Prices are coming under pressure but hopefully trade will stabilise with numbers reducing.
Trust you all had a great weekend and enjoyed all the delights of Savour Kilkenny which this year celebrated its 10th birthday.
Until next week be careful on the farm and good buying, good selling and good luck.