Northern Irish Slaughter Plant Prices Steady20 November 2013
UK - Beef cattle numbers are falling week on week but are steady year on year in Northern Ireland as plants quote steady prices, say analysts at the Livestock and Meat Commission.
Deadweight Cattle Trade
Quotes from the plants this week for U-3 grade prime cattle remained steady at 360-364p/kg with an additional 8-14p/kg bonus for steers and heifers that kill out in spec. Producers should consult with individual plants with regards to their bonus payments as it shows some variation between plants.
Quotes for O+3 cows this week were also similar to last week and ranged from 245-260p/kg. Similar quotes are expected for Monday, LMC analysts. The plants are reporting steady supplies of both prime cattle and cows to meet demand.
Throughput Lower, Similar to Last Year
Prime cattle throughput in the NI plants last week totalled 6,644 head compared to 7,250 head the previous week. This reduction by 606 head represents an eight per cent decline in throughput and is the lowest weekly prime kill since mid-September.
LMC analysts says that it is however similar to the 6,559 prime cattle slaughtered in the corresponding week in 2012. The cow kill in NI last week was similar to the previous week and totalled 2,268 head.
This was 19 per cent lower than the 2,783 cows processed in the same week in 2012. Imports from ROI last week for direct slaughter in NI plants totalled 705 head, with 460 of these being prime cattle.
This was 272 head lower than the previous week when 732 prime cattle were imported. Meanwhile 247 cows were exported from NI for direct slaughter in ROI plants. Exports to GB for direct slaughter last week were fairly similar to the previous week and consisted of 256 prime cattle and 99 cows.
Liveweight Prices Fall Back
Average steer and heifer prices in NI last week were both back in the region of 1p/kg to 364.5p/kg and 367p/kg respectively. R3 steer prices were almost unchanged at 375.3p/kg while the R3 heifer price was back by nearly a penny to 375.9p/kg.
Meanwhile, the average young bull price in NI last week was back 3.5p/kg to 339.2p/kg. The price paid for U3 young bulls in NI last week was back 2.2p/kg on the previous week at 355.1p/kg.
In GB last week average steer prices were back 2.2p/kg to 389.4p/kg. Average steer prices in Scotland and Northern England were relatively unchanged from the previous week while prices in the Midlands and Southern England were back by 3p/kg and 5p/kg respectively.
The R3 steer price in GB last week was back 3.5p/kg and was back across all GB regions in the region of 3-5p/kg. Average heifer prices in GB last week remained fairly steady at 389.5p/kg with prices in Northern England and the Midlands increasing by 4.2p/kg and 3.0p/kg respectively.
Meanwhile the heifer price in Southern England was back by 7p/kg to 365.0p/kg, 2p/kg lower than the NI heifer price.
A steady trade for prime cattle has been reported in ROI this week but a drop in the value of the euro against sterling last week resulted in a drop in reported prices in sterling terms. R3 steer prices were back by 6.5p/kg to 328.1p/kg while R3 heifer prices were back by 5.3p/kg to 340.3p/kg.
This puts the differential between ROI and NI last week at 47.2p/kg for R3 grade steers and 35.6p/kg for R3 grade heifers.
TheMeatSite News Desk