Weanling sales continue to get busier, with more and more weanlings coming out over the last few weeks. The trade continues on a positive note with good confidence around the ring among buyers.
A combination of farmer buyers and feedlot buyers are keeping a good floor in the trade with top-end weanlings continuing to be a very good trade.
Monday night’s weekly weanling sale in Granard saw 130 weanlings going through the ring, with 100 bulls and 30 heifers sold on the night.
Heifer weanlings were a roaring trade with lighter calves an especially good trade. Good quality Charolais and Limousin heifer calves around the 300kg mark had no trouble hitting €900 and over it with farmer buyers driving the trade for these lighter types.
Heavier heifers around the 400kg mark were also in demand making from €2.70-€3.10/kg on the night.
Speaking to the Irish Farmers Journal, mart manager Jody Reilly said: “We are probably seeing a little more of those lighter calves coming out this year. Grass has been scarce up this end of the country and it's probably having a little bit of an effect on the weights we are seeing coming into the mart.
"With the price of creep feed I don’t think farmers have fed as heavy this year and that’s probably also affecting the weights. When you look at the prices it’s not having an impact with lighter calves at 350kg probably a better trade when compared with calves at 450kg.
The recent dry weather has affected some of his customers but they are starting to move out again.
” We would have a lot of customers in Kildare and Westmeath and some of them dropped off a little during August but we are seeing them back around the ring again. Some ran out of grass and some ran out of water so that meant they had to ease up in buying cattle. Last week’s rain has helped a lot”.
It was the lighter bull calves which were the highlight of the trade with a few exceptional prices being paid for a group of castrated Charolais male weanlings with a lot of them under 300kg and selling for over €1000/head.
Jody said: “We have a few older farmers who like the idea of buying castrated calves as there is less work with them. Those lighter castrated calves are always a great trade. Heavier calves were a little easier with the tops over 400kg hitting €2.60-€2.80/kg. Plainer heavy calves were back at €2.50/kg."
Granard Mart sale dates
Monday night: weanlings and sucklers.
Wednesday: cull cows, heifers and bullocks.