IFA National Livestock Chairman Angus Woods is urging farmers selling cattle to ‘dig their heels in’ and insist on a substantial price increase from the factories.
Mr Woods said numbers of in-spec stock had tightened dramatically with agents reporting an inability to get numbers at quoted prices and having to pay more as a result.
“The grass cattle are now gone and winter finishers need a substantial price increase to cover costs and move cattle out of sheds,” continued Mr Woods who also pointed out that traditional winter finishers were not going to feed cattle at a loss.
“Many farmers are considering putting stock to grass next spring.
“Beef prices are rising and base prices of €3.70/3.75/kg for steers have been paid this week with €3.80/3.85/kg paid for heifers.
“These prices need to go a lot further in the lead-in to Christmas.”
Meanwhile, with the forecast for an additional 100,000 head of cattle next year, IFA has insisted that a strong live export trade is vital for calves, weanlings, stores and finished cattle. “Live exports are essential for competition and to support market balance and viable prices, as well as additional market outlets,” added Mr Woods. “The Department of Agriculture, Food & the Marine must increase resources and dedicated personnel on market access and prioritise the live trade.
“In addition, Minister Creed must work to remove the barriers on the live trade