Cork Marts is looking at a new initiative on calf assembly centres for export-type calves this year for the peak sale period.

Speaking to the Irish Farmers Journal, Cork Marts CEO Seán O’Sullivan said: “We have engaged with the calf exporters, ICBF and Teagasc on this initiative. Our plan is that from 1 February to mid-March, we’d assemble calves at five export centres – Bandon, Macroom, Skibbereen, Corrin and Dungarvan.

“The farmers’ calves will be assessed, graded on arrival and priced according to calf prices for similar calves sold through mart rings in the previous 72 hours. This is new for us this year and we are currently refining the model of pricing and grading with Teagasc and ICBF.”

Cork Marts is also rescheduling sale times for calves, with a Friday night sale planned for Cahir, Wednesday afternoon in Corrin and Thursday for Dungarvan instead of Monday.

Cork Marts is confident normal mart sales can safely resume next week Monday 11 January.