Factories continue to exert pressure on the beef trade this week as the weekly kill stays higher than normal.

Last week’s kill came in at 37,585 which was up slightly on the last full week’s kill at the end of January. The increased numbers are being put down to a combination of factors.

The cow kill is up almost 8,000 head so far in 2024 as a result of dairy farmers culling harder due to nitrates and suckler farmers reducing numbers or getting out.

The weekly kill is up over 2,000 head on the same week in 2023, with the majority of this rise being made up of extra cows. Cows haven’t taken the biggest hit in price though, with cow quotes relatively unchanged this week.

Cow beef is cheaper beef for factories to purchase, so it makes more sense for them to hit the more expensive prime cattle. Bullocks are working off €5.05-€5.10/kg this week, with heifers coming in at €5.10-€5.15/kg.

Cows are steady with €4.50/kg still on the table for good R grading suckler cows.