According to the Agricultural Price Indices published by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) on May, 15, the agriculture price index increased by 0.3% in March 2019.
This is compared to February of this year, with the agricultural output price index falling by 0.3% over the same period. On an annual basis, the agricultural input price index increased by 5.2% in March 2019 compared with March 2018. The agricultural output price index was down 0.7% in March 2019 compared with March 2018.
A further comparison of the March 2019 output sub-indices with the March 2018 sub-indices, shows that sheep decreased by 12.4% and cattle decreased by 9.0%. In terms of calves, a decrease of 25.3% from March 2018 was witnessed, with poultry outputs increasing by 1.7%, a month-on-month change of +0.1% from February 2019 to March 2019.
Pig outputs from March 2018-2019 increased by 0.3% or +2.3% from February 2019 to March 2019. In terms of animal product outputs, these decreased by -3.4% overall.
Milk outputs fell by -3.5% from last year, or -1.1% from February 2019 to March 2019. Eggs were also down by -3.5% since March 2018, while wool outputs decreased by -2.5% in the same period.
On the input side, the March 2019 sub-indices show that feeding stuffs and fertilisers were up 9.4% and 7.9% respectively on March 2018 prices. Calf feed witnessed the greatest increases, up 10.9% from last year, while cattle feed also increased by +10.6%. Pig feedstuffs increased by 12% from March 2018, with a +26% increase on poultry feedstuffs over the course of the same 12-month period.
Vet expenses were also up from March 2018, an increase of +2.1%. Energy inputs also increased (+3.5%), as did maintenance inputs which were up by +0.3%.