Agents for Purcell Brothers have begun buying young bulls at cattle sales with a first shipment to Turkey pencilled in for late April or early May. The firm is confident it has now concluded a contract for 20,000 head with Turkey’s state body the Dairy and Meat Board (ESK).

The contract is for continental-type cattle suited for further feeding and finishing on Turkish farms. Animals must meet the conditions of the Turkish health certificate, including an age limit of 12 months and must be quarantined for 21 days before shipping. The Irish Farmers Journal understands that Purcell Brothers is aiming for further follow-on contracts in 2017. The other major Irish exporters continue to seek additional contracts they can fill – Turkey has a huge requirement for imported meat and livestock in 2017 to feed its growing population.