May 122011

Commenting on the ongoing improvement in beef prices and the positive market outlook, Mr. Kevin Connolly, Chairperson of ICMSA's Beef and Cattle Committee , said that farmers are not only getting improved prices for their livestock but increasingly they are finding they can dictate the terms on which their cattle are sold and their position is likely to be strengthened in the weeks ahead given the level of cattle supplies.

In 2010, Mr. Connolly said that meat processors were able to dictate to farmers on prices and , despite farmer s' objections, the processors continued to operate an unpopular and unwieldy beef grid.  However, farmers are now getting their cattle killed off the grid – even if factories say otherwise – and Mr. Connolly advised any farmer who is unhappy with the grid system of payment to insist that his/her cattle are now purchased on his/her terms rather than the factory terms. The current price situation is certainly encouraging for all concerned and it is important that all players in the industry play a constructive role in ensuring that the upward trend is maintained and sustained.   There are outstanding issues in particular in relation to beef from the dairy herd and Mr. Connolly said that he believed that now is appropriate time to sit down and resolve the outstanding matters so that the industry can move forward in a constructive manner.

Ends.       12 May 2011.


Queries to Cathal MacCarthy, 087-6168758.