Friesian bull calves now account for just 11% of all calves traded in marts.

Strong export demand, which Bord Bia figures up to 9 April indicate calf exports running 9% or nearly 11,000 head above the same time last year, has seen shippers move to traditionally bred beef calves, with Angus calves in particular demand.

This is keeping prices steady albeit not spectacular, with one-month-old Angus heifers averaging €101/head this week. However, looking at the same week last year, the average price was €167/head.

Angus bull prices are also similar to last week at an average of €143/head compared with €227/head in late April 2021.

One-month-old Hereford bulls and heifers averaged €182/head and €132/head respectively, up around €5/head on the week.

Friesian bulls, where they were available, averaged €63/head, up €1/head on last week. Continental calf prices were up €20/head this week, but with small numbers on offer, individual sales can have a huge effect on the overall average.

Belgian Blue calves averaged €230/head and €240/head for heifers and bulls respectively.