Granard Mart, Co Longford, hosted its weekly weanling sale on Monday night, where almost 100 lots of bulls and heifers went through the ring, with the biggest show of animals in the heifer ring.
Buyers were out in force for all types on the night. However, it was clear to see the difference in prices between the top-quality lots and lesser-quality lots.
Heifers were met with a steady trade, where 2021-born heifers saw a good trade, while customers for older heifers just weren’t as hot on the night.
“It is early yet for top-end weanlings to be out,” according to mart manager Joseph Reilly.
“We would hope in three weeks’ time [that] the quality will show through the ring.
“We’ve had a really steady throughput of cattle over the last few weeks, so I don’t think you will see any really big sales come autumn, which will hopefully help the trade.”
Heifers had the largest entry and a strong trade to go with that, where some heifers weighing 450kg-plus sold for an average of €2.25/kg, with some older heifers pulling this average back.
Lighter heifers weighing 350kg-plus met an average of €2.60/kg, with some of the top heifers in this bracket coming close to €2.80/kg.
Heifers under 300kg were very scarce through the sale, with a few dairy-bred types going through the ring averaging around the €2/kg mark.
Bulls were met with a slightly tougher trade. However, the buyers were there for all types, with a big agent and farmer presence to help drive on the trade.
Bulls weighing 350kg and over averaged close to €2.70/kg for U grade type calves.
Poorer-quality calves averaged €2.50/kg in the same weight bracket.
Heavier bulls weighing 450kg-plus met an average of €2.30/kg, with quality paying in this category, as some very catchy Aberdeen Angus-bred bulls reached above the average.
Lighter bulls 300kg or under met a strong trade, with some of these reaching €3/kg, while they met an average of €2.85/kg.
“It’s great to see the cattle trade where it is, but suckler farmers need it all,” said Joseph. “We are hoping to run a special show and sale of weanlings in conjunction with Dovea Genetics in the coming weeks, with prize money for winners of these classes,” he added.