Despite rapidly growing numbers being traded, calf prices have increased in many categories this week.

Early-maturing beef type calf numbers increased by 38% on the week, according to the ICBF calf price database.

Despite this, prices for both Angus and Hereford heifers were up €7/head and €15/head on the week to an average price of €192 and €219 respectively.

Bull calves were not subject to the same increases, largely unchanged from last week.

Speaking to mart managers, strong farmer buyer demand is the main driving factor behind the trade. A number of mart mangers also noted that the overall improvement in the standard of calf offered for sale is helping maintain calf price.

After a difficult two weeks for calf exports due to adverse weather conditions, Friesian bull calves were up €3/head on the week to an average price of €59/head.

Speaking after Monday’s sale in Bandon of over 1,700 calves, mart manager Tom McCarthy said that there was a lot more export calf buyer activity on the day, as exporters start to get calves moving out of the country once again.