The Irish Farmers Association (IFA) has said that the phased reopening of the foodservice sector in the UK is likely to increase demand for Irish beef products, which in turn could translate into higher beef prices.
England is set to permit outdoor dining from 12 April, with Wales (22 April) and Scotland (26 April) following suit in the weeks that follow. Indoor dining is slated to follow in England from 17 May.
“The food service sector in the UK is a key outlet for Irish beef and the phased re-opening from next Monday is a significant development for beef sales,” commented IFA livestock chairman Brendan Golden.
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“The foodservice sector in the UK is a key outlet for Irish beef and the phased re-opening from next Monday is a significant development for beef sales,” he said.
Golden added that beef prices are continuing to edge upwards, but are not closing the gap with the Prime Export Benchmark price, which is at 11c/kg.
Currently, factories are paying €3.90/kg for steers and €4.00/kg for heifers, with higher deals for larger and specialist lots, the IFA said. In addition, cows are making from €3.20/kg for P grades and up to €3.70/kg at the top end for good quality R and U grading cows.
“The food service sector in the UK is scheduled for full reopening in May," said Golden. "This will increase demand for beef in the coming weeks and must return meaningful beef price increases."
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