Demand Shoots up Prices for Heifers

IRELAND - The cost of dairy heifers and young cows has rocketed as strong farmer demand and a scarce supply of suitable stock have combined to produce a red hot trade.
calendar icon 6 February 2008
clock icon 1 minute read
Over €2,200 has been paid for high EBI heifers and young cows, while average quality replacements are making up to €1,500. Numbers remain extremely tight and mart managers maintain that this has been one of the primary drivers of the market.

With many farmers seeking to source additional milk through the quota exchange, and the continued possibility of a further 2pc of quota being made available to producers by the EU from April 1, the traditional supply of replacement heifers has dried up.

In Bandon last Thursday there were just four dairy animals sold, despite the high prices on offer. A three-year-old cow made €1,660, while a five-year-old sold for €1,200. In many cases cull cows are being bought by dairy farmers for further milking. In Bandon an eight-year-old cow made €925.

Where good quality stock has come on the market, the sales have attracted buyers from right across the country.

Toddy O'Brien, of Wexford Farmers Mart in Enniscorthy, had buyers from Tipperary and north Clare when he handled a recent dispersal sale of a commercial herd in Co Wexford.

Source: Irish Independent
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