Call for Better Beef Prices

NORTHERN IRELAND, UK - The Ulster Farmers' Union (UFU) have this week called on red meat processors to pay producers more for their cattle now or face serious supply issues in the future.
calendar icon 29 July 2010
clock icon 2 minute read

Whilst the number of cattle slaughtered so far this has increased by eight per cent when compared to the same period in 2009, the outlook for the rest of the year and beyond is of tightening supplies. DARD APHIS figures for June show that there are almost 10 per cent fewer beef animals on the ground aged between 12-30 months when compared to June 2009 and whilst the number of dairy males available for slaughter this year may have increased, a resurgence in the export trade for dairy bull calves will only tighten these supplies going forward.

UFU Beef and Lamb Chairman Ray Elkin said: “An increase in the number of cattle slaughtered so far this year both in NI and across the UK has made market conditions difficult. However with indications of a significant tightening in supplies from now until the end of the year, an increase in the price producers are paid for their beef must be on the cards.”

Mr Elkin added: “The declining supply base for lamb as a result of poor returns in the market place has already resulted in one plant taking the decision to close its sheep kill line and subsequent job losses.

“Beef Production in NI is in a similar decline and unless producers get a better price for their beef this scenario will continue and seriously affect the future viability of the entire industry including the processing sector. As an industry we must work together if we are to build a sustainable industry for the future.”

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