IFA President John Bryan has said he is in no doubt about the anger among cattle farmers at the way beef prices were cut over recent weeks and the need for a price increase.
Speaking after a meeting in Dublin last week, Mr Bryan said that with the recent change in weather, factories were finding it extremely difficult to get cattle last week and are having to pay higher prices. He said farmers were very busy on the ground and were not prepared to part with stock at quoted prices. He commented: “A number of factories have increased their kill days and also increased the price up to €3.90 per kg base to get steers. Heifer prices are also rising because of very tight supplies and some plants have paid a base of €4.10 per kg this week.”
Meanwhile, IFA National Livestock Chairman Henry Burns said the factories had no argument with the Bord Bia market prices put forward by the IFA to show that Irish cattle prices can increase. He said: “The facts speak for themselves and Irish prices can rise based on UK prices of €4.50 to €4.60 per kg and EU prices of over €4.00 per kg and rising.”
Mr Burns concluded: “Supplies tightened rapidly as the week progressed and as agents looked for stock for later in the week.” He went on to say that the factories are no longer able to buy cattle at the quoted prices and farmers who are digging in are getting 5 to 10c per kg more.