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LMC: Slaughter Down as Deadweight Values Increase

04 March 2013

UK - Prime beef and cow slaughter in Northern Ireland fell by 353 and 263 on last week, according to market experts at Livestock and Meat Commission Northern Ireland.

Deadweight Quotes

Base quotes from the plants early this week for U-3 grade prime cattle were 338-344p/kg and increased to 344-348p/kg as the week progressed.

Plants are reporting tighter supplies of prime cattle this week which has helped to increase competition for prime cattle, particularly for in-spec and Farm Quality Assured cattle. Quotes for cows this week ranged from 285-290p/kg with similar quotes expected for Monday.

Prime cattle slaughterings in NI last week totalled 6,697 head, a reduction of 353 head on the previous week. Meanwhile cow slaughterings were also back on the previous week, down 263 head to 1,631 head.

lmc 040313

Imports of prime cattle for direct slaughter from ROI last week totalled 439 head and accounted for 6.5 per cent of the total prime kill with a total of 66 cows also imported from ROI for direct slaughter. 

Exports of cows from NI to ROI for direct slaughter have remained similar to previous weeks at 257 head but are significantly higher than the corresponding week last year when 94 cows were exported.

Average steer prices in NI last week increased by 3.2p/kg to 339.7p/kg while the average heifer price increased by 4p/kg to 344.7p/kg. The top base quote for U-3 grade heifers last week was 340p/kg and the average price paid was 4.7p/kg above this which indicates that higher prices are available than base quotes would suggest.

Base quotes should therefore be used as a starting point for negotiation and producers should shop around to ensure that they get they get the best possible deal.

Deadweight prices have also shown an improvement across GB with average steer prices up 2.2p/kg to 370.7p/kg and average heifer prices up 2.5p/kg to 368.0p/kg. Steer prices in Southern England increased by 4.6 p/kg to 363.1p/kg while heifer prices in the region increased by 3.8p/kg to 359.5p/kg.

The differential between R3 prices in NI and Southern England last week was 24.9p/kg for steers and 18.7p/kg for heifers with the differential widening further as you move north.

The increasing value of Euro against Sterling has meant ROI prices have continued to increase in sterling terms. The R3 steer price last week increased by 3p/kg to 350.1p/kg while the R3 heifer price increased by 3.3p/kg to 365.6p/kg.

This Week’s Liveweight Marts


A strong trade across the marts this week seen first quality finished heifers selling to an average of 210p/kg compared to an average of 200p/kg last week. Second quality finished heifers sold to an average of 190p/kg (+13p/kg). Finished first quality steers sold to an average of 209p/kg this week with second quality selling to 190p/kg.

The good trade for store cattle has also continued with average prices for all classes of store cattle showing an increase. First quality bullocks up to 400kg sold to an average of 209p/kg (+9p/kg) with second quality bullocks in the same weight range selling to 184p/kg (+13p/kg).

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