HCC reports falling beef prices

HCC reports falling beef prices

An increase in the UK’s supply of prime cattle and a slight uplift in imports coupled with subdued consumer demand has resulted in a fall in beef prices in recent months.

This is according to the latest figures released by Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC).

HCC has reported that the average deadweight price for steers during the week ending 19th April was 359p per kg – more than 30p lower than for the same period last year. Prices for heifers and young bulls have followed similar patterns.

The number of prime cattle passing through UK abattoirs during the first quarter of 2014 was marginally up by 1% – or 6,000 head – on last year, with most of this increase coming during the month of March.

“The prime cattle slaughter mix continues to have increased numbers of heifers within it. This does suggest that producers are not keeping the replacements as they once did.” said John Richards, Industry and Market Information Officer at HCC.

GB retail data from Kantar Worldpanel shows that purchases of beef dropped during the first quarter of 2014. The total volume sold was seven per cent lower than in the corresponding months of 2013. In contrast, however, the total spent on beef purchases increased by one per cent.

“The increase in overall spend can be attributed to the fact that the average retail price increased when compared to the first three months of 2013,” said Mr Richards.

“While these figures may seem concerning it should be noted that beef remained the strongest performing red meat at retail level, worth over half the total red meat volume sold.”

Imports of beef into the UK also increased during the first two months of 2014, says HCC, particularly from Ireland and the Netherlands.

“The recent fall in producer prices can be explained when combining the elements of increased supply, both from home and abroad, with a reduced consumer demand.’’

HCC has recently launched its new spring and summer recipe leaflets for Welsh Beef, with recipe ideas that are ideal for the barbecue season, a time when beef sales traditionally increase.

The leaflets are being distributed to members of the HCC Butchers’ Club and will also be available at multiple retailers. Butchers will also receive promotional posters and stickers to promote Welsh Beef to their customers.

A wide range of Welsh Beef recipes can also be found on HCC’s website, www.eatwelshbeef.co.uk<http://www.eatwelshbeef.co.uk>

Further details can be found in HCC’s monthly market bulletin on its website – www.hccmpw.org.uk<http://www.hccmpw.org.uk>.



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