Heifer values ​​rebound with rising milk prices


Increases in milk prices improved confidence around dairy rings in regional sales parks, recouping some of the 12% drop in values ​​seen in August and September.

Dairy values ​​like fluid milk are in a rising market and appear to have recovered around £ 150 of the £ 250-300 they lost after peaking in June.

Auctioneers say herd-flying policies and tuberculosis culling keep demand nationwide, while cattle remain tight across Europe and imported heifers are scarce.

See also: Arla adds 3 pence / liter to farm milk price in December

EU figures are tight

Demand is huge and exceeds supply across Europe, says Mark Lee of Norton and Brooksbank, which struggles to compete with dealers across the continent.

EU cattle wagons are scarce, with high demand from Polish, Italian and Portuguese traders and Dutch farmers.

“Dutch farmers now want to come and buy British cows,” Lee said, adding that an export facility from the EU side (possibly Calais) was needed to export British cattle.

He said imported heifers were 18% more expensive, with 30-liter heifers now costing UK farms more than £ 2,000 delivered, instead of around £ 1,700.

Opening offer of £ 2,000

Fred Spurgeon of Gisburn Auction Marts said two importers had been buying from the Gisburn dairy arena since the summer because they could not source foreign cattle.

He said the “lag in milk prices,” after rising costs in the summer, stifled trade in the fall as farms faced higher bills from contractors, increased costs for feed. animals and, in some places, cash flow difficulties. Buyers were forced to work with tight budgets.

He said: “Trade has strengthened over the past three weeks and I hope that will not deter importers from coming. Any 30-32 liter heifer cost £ 2,000 at the last sale – we even got an opening offer of £ 2,000. I think the trade will be with us until Christmas at least.

Prevent an exodus

Glyn Lucas, senior dairy auctioneer at Harrison & Hetherington, said industry consolidation and more people leaving the industry were likely unless processors donate 40 pence / liter.

“I don’t think the public wants more consolidation, or the processors,” Lucas said, adding that the cost of replacement (cull cows and crossbred) also had to increase with inflation.

Borderway trade peaked in June at over £ 2,200, then fell 12%. However, heifers from the mid-November dairy sale leveled off at £ 1,737 and the Border and Lakeland Club sale leveled off at £ 2,022 – a kind of recovery.



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