Pedi­gree sale turns into a real ‘cracker’

Irish Independent - Farming - - PEDIGREE AND SALES -

APTLY known as the Christ­mas Cracker Show and Sale, the Ir­ish Charo­lais Cat­tle So­ci­ety fi­nal sale of pedi­gree bulls for 2018 truly de­liv­ered a “cracker” for its breed­ers at El­phin Mart, Co Roscom­mon on Satur­day.

The fes­tive lights sparkled in the spirit of the early sea­sonal at­mos­phere where the over­flow of the ring­side watched the pro­ceed­ings on a CCTV screen, and the ven­dors ben­e­fited from one of the best pedi­gree bull sales of the sea­son.

In an ex­cep­tion­ally strong trade for qual­ity bulls, the lead­ing price of €10,000 achieved in 2017was matched, with the num­ber of bulls sold on par or slightly up on last year — and the over­all clear­ance brush­ing close to 80pc.

Ir­ish Charo­lais Cat­tle So­ci­ety Pres­i­dent Kevin Maguire com­mented “there is still very strong de­mand for Charo­lais as a beef breed”, re­flect­ing the gen­eral im­pres­sion of a “very sat­is­fac­tory” sale in what has been one of the most dif­fi­cult pedi­gree sale sea­sons for a num­ber of years across all breeds.

The sea­son in gen­eral has been im­pacted by the de­pressed com­mer­cial beef prices, lack of con­fi­dence in the fu­ture of suck­ler farm­ing, and the in­crease in the num­ber of pedi­gree bulls across all breeds.

The week­end sale ben­e­fited from the qual­ity of the en­try which came from a spread of 68 herds, and the cap­ping of in­di­vid­ual herd en­tries to a max­i­mum of four bulls, which was only con­ceded to two breed­ers fol­low­ing the pre-se­lec­tion process.

Turnout for the show and sale was high at 85pc of the en­try, but the level of in­ter­est from breed­ers was con­firmed with the ring­side crowded through­out un­til the fi­nal bull went un­der auc­tion­eer Tom Cox’s ham­mer af­ter a busy af­ter­noon of lively bid­ding.

The trade was very steady through­out with the younger bulls hav­ing a slight edge on price within the over­all av­er­age of €4,078, with 26 bulls hav­ing sold for €4,000 or more and the top price of €10,000 recorded.

Pur­chasers paid an av­er­age of €3,910 for the first third of the bulls sold, in­creas­ing to €3,940 for the next third of sale and peak­ing at an av­er­age of €4,457 for the fi­nal third, be­ing the younger bulls.

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