Beef Farmers In Position To Drive Market Prices

NORTHERN IRELAND, UK - The Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU) have said that unless beef prices continue to rise considerably within the next week, farmers who are in a position to do so should seriously consider restricting supplies.
calendar icon 29 November 2010
clock icon 2 minute read

UFU Beef and Lamb Committee Chairman Ray Elkin said; “In the past number of weeks processor representatives have said that there are signs that beef prices will increase significantly in the new year. However, the UFU feels there is no reason why a more considerable increase cannot be achieved in the run up to Christmas.”

Northern Ireland prices have risen slightly in the past week, and trade in Great Britain is also strengthening with prices already 10-30p/kg ahead of Northern Ireland (NI) for U3 grading steers. The LMC bulletin this week also highlighted that paid prices are noticeably higher than quoted prices even when the bonus payments of 8p/kg are included and this is a clear signal to producers that better deals are out there.

Ray Elkin continued; “It is encouraging to see prices rise in the past week but we are a long way from where we need to be. Unless we see a more significant increase in beef prices farmers who are able to do so should seriously consider restricting supplies to the meat plants. I would encourage farmers to market their cattle strongly and to really push processors to pay more based on the knowledge that the market is rising and that producers are in the driving seat. If producers are not happy with the price on offer they should negotiate strongly for one that is more favourable.

“The past year has proven particularly difficult for many beef producers with production costs up and prices largely static. However global market signals are very positive with Brazilian beef prices now on par with NI prices and tightening supplies being reported across the world.”

Next week the UK Unions and Irish Farmers' Association Livestock Chairman will be meeting in Wales to discuss the difficulties currently in the beef sector and the UFU will use the platform to discuss a joint approach for moving forward.

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