Prime cattle prices experience increase

Prime cattle prices in GB for the week ended 16 July increased to 331p/kg, up more than 2p/kg on the previous week. 

This continues the bullish trend that has been taking place in the GB cattle market since around the end of April. Overall, this means that prime cattle prices have now almost recovered to levels seen at the beginning of this year.

Across all prime cattle, prices increased by more than 2p/kg on the previous week. Bulls and steers saw the biggest increases in prices during the week, increasing to 319.5p/kg and 332.5p/kg respectively; steers meeting R4L classification received a price of 344.5p/kg. While heifer prices increased to 334.8p/kg. Cow prices also increased by 2p/kg; at 215p/kg cow prices are now at their highest level since last August.

Estimated throughputs suggest that supply since the beginning of this month is behind on year- earlier levels which may be contributing to placing upward pressure on prices. With estimated steer throughputs since the beginning of July down almost 4,500 head or nine per cent on the same period last year. This may be partially due to stock finished off of grass being delayed in coming forward for slaughter due to a late spring which resulted in below average grass growth. Though young bull and heifer throughputs appear to be relatively similar to year-earlier levels. In addition, the more favourable sterling-euro exchange rate where £1 is equal to approximately €1.20 will help domestic cattle compete more aggressively with their counterparts across the water, which have lost about 15c/kg for R3 grade steers and heifers since the middle of June.

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