Mid-Tipp Thurles Mart hosted its general cattle sale last Monday attracting over 900 cattle.
These were mostly made up of younger cattle suitable for grass, with heavier cattle getting in short supply due to continued factory demand. This demand was highlighted by a clearance rate of 93% across all the sections.
Speaking after the sale, mart manager Martin Ryan said: “There was a real spring trade for grass cattle. The vast majority of these were a year to 14 months old, last year’s calves. We had buyers from all over the country that really had the light cattle flying.
“The smaller entry of strong heavy cattle were met with a good trade. The majority of these were Angus and Hereford, with exporters very active.
“While it’s hard to compare with last year, numbers are on par with 2019 levels.”
There proved a bit more bite in the light steers over the heifers, with bullocks from 400kg to 500kg selling for an average price of €2.24/kg. This was led by a group of three Limousin-sired yearling bullocks that had an average weight of 428kg and sold for €1,140 (€2.66/kg). Traditional breeds of the same weight sold for up to €2.30/kg.
Lighter bullocks from 300kg to 400kg sold to a top of €2.39/kg for Charolais and Limousin, while Hereford steers of the same weight sold to €2.35/kg.
First-cross dairy-beef heifers from Angus and Hereford sires made up the majority of lighter lots. Many first-moves direct from farmers or yearling heifers from 300kg to 400kg sold up to €2.30/kg. Overall average for heifers of this weight stood at €2.12/kg.
Moving up a weight division to sub-500kg and a Limousin heifer recorded the best price per kg at €2.34 for a 15-month-old heifer that weighed 495kg and sold for €1,160. The best of the Angus was just below this at €2.33/kg for a group of six that averaged 490kg.
Heavier heifers were very light on the ground, but a good number of bullocks between 500kg and 600kg were on offer. These averaged €2.13/kg, with prices as high as €2.56/kg.
This top price was paid for a 13-month-old Limousin that weighed 500kg and sold for €1,280.