Traditional beef breeds provided the backbone of this week’s calf sale at Bandon Mart and with close to 1,600 on offer, numbers were up on last week and well up when compared with the same sale date in 2022.
Maybe it was the outbreak of sunshine in west Cork that drove it, but across all breeds, there appeared to be fewer calves selling for under €100 compared with other weeks this year.
What was noticeable looking through the pens was the presence of a good few stronger calves and this translated into good prices in the sales ring.
Both bull and heifer calves over 80kg had the best chance of achieving prices at the upper end of the trade and a share more beat the €300 mark compared with last week. Anywhere from €250 to €360 was available for these stronger calves.
Moving down the weight range, 65kg appeared to be the next cut-off point for Angus- and Hereford-crosses, with €170 to €250 available for these.
At the lower end of the scales, €100 to €170 could be achieved and even some calves under 50kg hit into that price range this week.
There was a good turnout of continentals compared with most of this year’s sales.
The heavier calves were making similar money to the top third of traditional beef breed calves with a top price of €410.
Friesian bull calf numbers continue to fall, but prices remained similar to last week and held well. Anything from €45 up to €130 would have purchased the majority of Friesian bulls under six weeks of age.
Prices in the Friesian heifer calf section were back on the highs of last week, but on par with most other weeks, with most selling for between €150 and €300.