Cattle price cuts must stop – IFA

Speaking at the IFA farmers protest in Dublin last week, IFA National Livestock Chairman Henry Burns said the cattle price cuts at the factories have to stop. He said livestock farmers have seen prices cut by 30c/kg or over €100/head in the last four to five weeks.

  Henry Burns said that these price cuts cannot be justified and he called on Minister Coveney to demand that the factories stop the price cuts.

  The IFA Livestock leader told the 2,500-strong crowd at the protest outside the EU Commission office that cattle prices in our main export market in the UK have stabilised and actually increased in the last week. He said UK prices for R3 steers are the equivalent of €4.98/kg, incl. vat.

  Henry Burns said that there is a very strong view in the sector that supplies of steers and heifers will tighten considerably in the next few weeks. He said all of the forecasts from Bord Bia and the Department AIMS data point to a tightening in prime cattle supplies.

  The IFA livestock leader said factories are struggling to get cattle at less than the base price of €4.00/kg for steers and €4.10/kg for heifers.

  Speaking at a meeting of the COPA Beef Working Group in Brussels this week, Henry Burns called on Minister Coveney to insist that beef is firmly on the EU Farm Council agenda meeting in Europe next week.

   He said the EU needs to deal with the fallout from the Russian ban and other market access issues.