01 July 2015 | Online since 2003

Cattle with pre fix UK9 ear tag should be selling at average price

24 October 2012 13:20:11|Cattle,News

Cattle with pre-fix UK9 ear tag 'should be selling at average price'

Over recent weeks Northern Ireland’s beef farmers have asked a question and the only answers have come from within the Republic of Ireland (ROI) – and not, as might be expected, from the Northern Ireland Meat Exporters Association (NIMEA).

”All we want to know is why, when our cattle ear tag numbers are pre-fixed UK9 which confirms our legitimate position within the UK beef cattle market, are our cattle being discounted by over 11 per cent, or about £150 a head, compared with the average for those sold elsewhere within UK boundaries,” explained the National Beef Association’s Northern Ireland chairman, Oisin Murnion?

“The most interesting response is attributed to Bord Bia (Irish Food Board) sources which are reported to have told journalists in the ROI that beef from cattle produced in NI is more likely to be sold to high paying mainland retailers, instead of exported onto less high priced markets, and also benefits from being backed with Red Tractor assurance through the Livestock and Meat Commission’s (LMC) FQAS assurance scheme.”

“On top of this Bord Bia sources are said to have confirmed that higher prices for British, or UK, beef are paid by UK retailers on the back of a clear preference for product that is sourced domestically and that any investigation into the discount on NI cattle, when compared to mainland cattle, may discover that the difference is, in part at least, due to the import for direct slaughter of so many cattle from south of the border.”

“The most recent import figures confirmed by the DARD are that during the week ending October 13th some 1,198 head where trucked in from the south for direct slaughter in NI factories.”

“This is almost 12 per cent of total factory throughput that week, including cows, and the NBA is quite sure that the presence of such high volumes of non-NI cattle on NI slaughter lines continued to contribute to the on-going price penalty of around £150 a head that hard pressed NI feeders and finishers have to face.”

“However in contrast with the reflective and analytical comments attributed to Bord Bia the most recent contribution from NIMEA to discussion on this issue is to claim that the importation of up to 15 per cent of overall factory beef throughput from another EU member state is the beef industry equivalent of nothing more than crossing the border to buy cheaper fuel for the car.”

“And then adds insult to injury by suggesting that counter moves by desperate finishers to sell some cattle direct to mainland buyers is a positive farmer initiative - when in reality it is a forced venture by small businessmen desperate to recover some costs while the processors who ought to be handling their stock focus on improving their margins by buying much cheaper cattle from another EU country instead.”

“There is something fundamentally wrong with this scenario and so the NBA asks, once again, why when our cattle ear tag numbers are pre-fixed UK9 which confirms our legitimate position within the UK beef cattle market, are our cattle being discounted by over 11 per cent, or about £150 a head, compared with the average for those sold elsewhere within UK boundaries?” Mr Murnion added.



No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

To post comment without approval login or register

Display name

Please enter your name

Email (optional)

Please enter your comment

Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.

Some error on your process.Please try one more time.


Start Date: 14 June 2015
Experienced tractor driver / machinery operator required. Immediate start! Job in Hampshire / West Sussex

Family 3,000 acre contacting business require an additional member of staff. With  a team of 12, the company c...

Start Date: 1 July 2015
A421: Marketing/Food Chain Manager - Home based

An excellent career opportunity has arisen for a talented professional to play a central role in our clients new food chain t...

Start Date: 1 July 2015
J532: UK Business Manager - business services

UK Business Manager - business services.De Lacy Executive has been appointed to seek a UK Business Manager to direct and deve...

Start Date: 1 July 2015
Job for a milker/general farm worker on a progressive dairy farm in Cambridgeshire

We are currently looking for an enthusiastic individual to work along side a team of five. Currently milking 600 cows x3 time...

Start Date: 1 July 2015
A428: Technical Service Specialist - West Midlands

An exciting career opportunity has arisen with a leading agricultural machinery manufacturer for a Technical Service Speciali...

Top stories you may have missed
5 June 2015 | Cattle

A strong pound and increased red meat imports coupled with a plentiful dome...

5 June 2015 | Arable

Depression is affecting Wales' farming industry and there is a need to use ...

5 June 2015 | Arable

With just one week to go before the final judging and announcement of the w...

5 June 2015 | Finance

A rural law expert has highlighted the importance of good succession planni...

5 June 2015 | Farmshops

A south Yorkshire dairy farming family is pulling out all the stops to prom...

4 June 2015 | Finance

Predicting what is going to happen to wheat prices is a challenge, but in s...

4 June 2015 | Agri Safety

A Lancashire based livestock theft prevention scheme is aiming to go nation...

4 June 2015 | News

A female farmer has been recognised by the farming and conservation industr...

4 June 2015 | Finance

The new Conservative government appears to be preparing to implement cuts f...

4 June 2015 | Arable

The Rural Payments Agency (RPA) will have mobile support units at the follo...