Associations encourage beef farmers to use auction marts
Published:  13 May, 2014

The National Beef Association (NBA) and the Livestock Auctioneers Association (LAA) have told beef farmers that if abattoirs say they cannot take their cattle, they should consider using auction marts instead.

Chris Dodds, executive secretary at the LAA, said: “Some of the big abattoirs are claiming to be full and asking farmers to hold back their finished cattle. Our message to them is to try their local auction mart. We’re open for business and have plenty of room to sell prime beef animals and help farmers get a fair price.”

The LAA said that holding finished cattle back, even if for a very short period of time, can cost beef producers dear, as they have to continue to feed and manage them.

Chris Mallon, national director at the NBA, said: “I’ve heard of people being told in April that they have to wait until late May or even June before bringing their cattle to the abattoir. That’s crazy. The auction mart offers a better option for beef producers right now, but they should also use marts in the future.

“For store cattle there’s no realistic alternative to the auction mart if you want to get a good price. But I would encourage beef producers to consider auction marts for finished cattle too – especially if they are being told to hold their cattle back.
“Not only will they save on the cost of feeding and looking after cattle for an extra month or so, but they will also get the true market price for their livestock.”

The NBA believes that using auction marts is also the best way to help the British beef industry.

Mallon added: “There’s a lot of talk about supporting British farmers and beef producers, but the best way to do this is through the auction marts. They offer a good service to farmers, paying promptly and supporting their customers.”