There was close to a 100% clearance rate in Bandon Mart across its general cattle and calf sales on Monday last.

For younger cattle, there was solid demand throughout for both light and forward stores.

Angus- and Hereford-cross calves backboned the calf sale and the same breeds held sway when it came to the light store trade too.

Grass buyers were especially active for them and prices ranging from €2.40/kg to €2.85/kg were available, with quality and at times the numbers in the lot dictating at what end of that price range they sold for.

Friesian bullocks were making anywhere from €1.82/kg to €2.35/kg, with demand and prices strongest for the heavier forward Friesian bullocks. One lot weighing 568kg sold for €1,335 (€2.35/kg).

Most 2023-born Friesians were selling 10c either side of €2/kg as buyers appeared anxious for cattle for grass.

Prices ranging from €2.30/kg to €2.80/kg were available for forward store bullocks and heifers, with demand strongest for Angus-crosses, with Herefords not too far off them.

Factory buyers

Factory buyers were anxious for stock, with numbers tightening around the country and this was evident around the ring, with a few lots making close to or over €1,000 with their weight.

The dry cow ring has been consistently busy since last autumn and this week was no different, with 157 cows on offer and 156 sold.

Forward Friesian cows were pushing close to and passing €2/kg.

Speaking after the sale, mart manager Sean Dennehy said: “The store trade was kept quiet by bad weather until well into March, but with the sun making an appearance, numbers started to come out in a big way. There’s an awful lot of cows coming out still.

“Farmers are moving on any empty cows. You could nearly say the cow ring has been busy the last two years. We’re consistently getting between 150 and 200 cows every week.

“This seems to be the second phase of getting cow numbers down, as uncertainty around nitrates is still a big factor around here and there seems to be no room for any passengers on farms.”

Those big numbers of cows are meeting strong demand from both feed lots and factories, who were very active ringside for well fleshed cows.

Commenting on the trade, Dennehy said: “Cows very good trade, they made anywhere from €1.22/kg to €2.39/kg. Factories are paying good money for finished cows around the mart ring and farmers are being rewarded there.”

In pictures

This February 2023-born Friesian bull weighed 375kg and sold for €880 (€2.35/kg).

This March 2022-born Hereford-cross bullock weighed 620kg and sold for €1,600 (€2.58/kg).

These March 2023-born Angus-cross bullocks weighed 410kg and sold for €1,100 (€2.68/kg).

These February 2023-born Angus-cross bullocks weighed 395kg and sold for €1,020 (€2.58/kg).

These April 2022-born Angus-cross bullocks weighed 532kg and sold for €1,480 (€2.78/kg).

This March 2022-born Hereford-cross bullock weighed 620kg and sold for €1,600 (€2.58/kg).

These January 2022-born Hereford-cross bullocks weighed 652kg and sold for €1,700 (€2.61/kg).

This January 2022-born Belgian Blue-cross bullock weighed 615kg and sold for €1,590 (€2.59/kg).

This February 2022-born Charolais-cross bullock weighed 725kg and sold for €1,920 (€2.65/kg).

This January 2022-born Montbeliarde-cross bullock weighed 620kg and sold for €1,500 (€2.42/kg).

This March 2023-born Angus-cross bullock weighed 425kg and sold for €1,000 (€2.35/kg).

This October 2016-born Friesian cow weighed 705kg and sold for €1,300 (€1.84/kg).

This February 2020-born Simmental-cross cow weighed 895kg and sold for €2,140 (€2.39/kg).