Beef Prices

Current Beef Market:

Last Updated: Friday, May 24, 2019

SHRINKING CATTLE POPULATION EXPECTED TO TIGHTEN BEEF SUPPLIES

The GB cattle population has continued to fall, according to the latest data from the British Cattle Movement Service. At 1 April, the GB population totalled 7.99 million head, a 2% (140,000 head) decline compared to last year.

Beef cattle and dairy males between 12 and 30 months, an indicator of short-term beef supplies, are down slightly on last year (-0.2%).

As a large proportion of these animals are expected to enter the market within the next 12 months, we expect that prime slaughters likely to be a little lower than last year, with numbers beginning to tighten mid-year.

Looking at longer-term supplies, the number of cattle under 12 months is down by 2% compared to last year. The majority of the drop comes from animals aged between 6-12 months.

This is not surprising considering the challenging conditions last spring, which resulted in fewer births and higher on-farm mortality. As a result, we expect that the supplies could continue to be tighter until the latter half of 2020.

In the group of cattle aged up to 6 months, there is a large drop in the number of overall dairy animals born. In particular, there has been a large drop in the number of dairy males, with nearly 15,000 fewer on the ground in April than in last year.

This is likely a result of the changing shifts in dairy inseminations towards sexed semen.  There was also a lift in the number of beef animals under 6 months. Again, likely a reflection the move towards putting dairy cows to a beef sire.

AHDB

Felicity Rusk

Head
Neck
Neck This cut is generally sold as stewing steak. Long and slow cooking will release a good flavour and produce a good tasty gravy or sauce. View Meat Cut
Chuck
Chuck & Blade This cut is often sold as braising steak, a little tenderer than stewing steak, and can be ideally used in casseroles, stews and for braising. Blade steak is also sometimes known as “flatiron steak” View Meat Cut
Thick Rib
Thick Rib Typically sold as braising steak. This cut is somewhat tenderer than stewing steak and is ideal for use in casseroles, stews and for braising. View Meat Cut
Clod
Clod This is an economical cut that is a flavourful, but is a much less tender meat. Cut from the middle of the shoulder this is usually sold as stewing steak or used in burgers. This cut is suitable for slow cooking in stews. View Meat Cut
Fore Rib
Fore Rib sold ‘boned and rolled’, ‘French trimmed’ or ‘on the bone’, has good marbling throughout the flesh and has excellent fat cover on the outside making for a superb roast. This can also be cut into steak ‘Ribeye’s’, ideal for grilling, frying or barbecuing. View Meat Cut
Thin Rib
Thin Rib A very dense and wholesome cut often used for mince. It is the equivalent of a spare rib and absolutely delicious served glazed. View Meat Cut
Shin
Shin Generally sold as stewing steak it is best suited for long, slow cooking to breakdown the high proportion of connective tissues and denser fibres, it also makes for thick sauces and gravy View Meat Cut
Leg
Leg Generally sold as stewing steak it is best suited for long, slow cooking to breakdown the high proportion of connective tissues and denser fibres, it also makes for thick sauces and gravy View Meat Cut
Sirloin
Sirloin This is typically sold boned and rolled. A prime cut, which is perfect for a classic Sunday roast. Sirloin steak is taken from the same area but is cut into steaks such as ‘T’-bone, Porterhouse and Entrecote. These are prime cuts, which are suitable for grilling, frying, stir-fries and barbecuing. View Meat Cut
Thin Flank
Thin flank meat from this area is often known as ‘skirt’, ‘hanger steak’ (or ‘onglet’ in France). It has plenty of fat marbling making it moist and flavoursome. This cut is often used in Mexican recipes such as Fajitas. This cut is good for grilling, frying or barbecuing. View Meat Cut
Brisket
Brisket Usually sold ‘boned and rolled’, and sometimes salted. This joint is suitable for slow cooking or pot roasting. Brisket is the cut traditionally used for making corned beef; it is also used for lean mince. View Meat Cut
Rump
Rump Although this is a prime cut, it’s often cheaper than fillet or sirloin, because it’s not quite as tender. However many say that it has a far superior flavour than sirloin or fillet. Rump is suitable for quick cooking such as frying, stir-fry, grilling and barbecuing. View Meat Cut
Top side silverside
Siverside & Topside Silverside was traditionally salted and sold as a boiling joint for salt beef. This very lean piece of meat is now most often sold unsalted as a joint for roasting; regular basting is recommended during the cooking process. Topside is also a very lean joint and often has a layer of fat tied around it to help baste and keep it moist. This is also suitable for cutting into steaks to fry, grill or use in stir-fries. View Meat Cut
Thick Flank
Thick Flank This joint is also known as ‘top rump’ good for slow roasting as a joint or braised in pieces. This can also be sold as stir fry strips or flash fry steak. View Meat Cut
Leg
Leg Generally sold as stewing steak it is best suited for long, slow cooking to breakdown the high proportion of connective tissues and denser fibres, it also makes for thick sauces and gravy. View Meat Cut
Leg
Leg Generally sold as stewing steak it is best suited for long, slow cooking to breakdown the high proportion of connective tissues and denser fibres, it also makes for thick sauces and gravy. View Meat Cut