Short-keep forward cattle were in great demand in Kanturk on Tuesday, with factory agents competing to build up numbers.
There was great competition, both ringside and online, for stock and prices for forward stores saw €3/kg passed on numerous occasions, with Angus to the fore and Hereford close on their heels.
Upwards of €2.90/kg was available for those north of 500kg.
Bullocks were making up to €3.07/kg, while heifers were making up to €3.17/kg.
Demand wasn’t confined to beef breeds either. One pen of well-conformed Friesian bullocks sold for €2.56/kg.
Price momentum continued upwards for dry cows too.
The majority of Friesian cows with a good flesh cover were selling for between €2/kg and €2.20/kg.
Suckler cows were mainly Angus or Hereford and up to €2.76/kg was available for them.
The market for 2021-born cattle was equally competitive. Prices here varied from €2.30/kg to €2.75/kg for most of the Angus- and Hereford-cross bullocks and heifers that were on offer.
We’ve never seen the dry cow trade like this year
Speaking after the sale, manager Seamus O’Keeffe said: “Trade is flying. We had an Angus cow here this week weighing 835kg that made €2,310 – that says a lot.
“Forward cattle too, both bullocks and heifers, have been a great trade. We’ve never seen the dry cow trade like this year.
“We reached a peak of 180 dry cows and we’re back to around 100 a week now.
“The lighter stores came out earlier than usual, but there was still no slackening off.
“Numbers have eased a small bit in May, but February, March and April, I’ve never experienced anything like it – we’re approximately 3,000 animals ahead of last year in those three months.”
With the main calving season in the rear-view mirror, calf numbers have fallen back at the north Cork sales venue and the reduction in supply has given a lift to trade.
Angus and Hereford comprised the bulk of the calves on offer. Prices for Angus ranged from €110 to €380 and Hereford went from €150 to €380.
Commenting on calves, Seamus said: “Since calves started to get scarce, they’re making huge money, especially Angus and whiteheads.
“Even the poor Angus that were making €80 and €100 a few weeks ago are making €150 now.”