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Cattle buyers take their pick

QUALITY cattle have defied market pressures to maintain prices at this week's Gympie sales, despite a weather-related glut in the market.

"There's lots of supply, so the emphasis is on quality and the buyers are selective," Sullivan Livestock auctioneer James Cochrane said yesterday.

"Coming into winter, everyone's got a little nervous.

"We got rain too late in the season for sufficient pasture growth ahead of our slower growing winter months.

"Everyone's country's green, but it's still quite short," he said, explaining that this had prompted many graziers to sell.

"But it's something farmers have been through before.

"Quite often when it starts to get cold, you get an influx of cattle for sale. Then cattle numbers start to level off.

"A lot of cattle went on the market last week throughout Queensland and weaner sales just add to the large numbers of cattle on the market at this time of year.

"A lot of the meatworks have a waiting list of two to two-and-a-half months.

"Prices were not too bad, they have still held up to what they were, but that was still below the average price we have seen for our beef.

"We had 2300 cattle (at Gympie saleyards) on Monday. I believe we'll yard some big numbers for the next three or four weeks and then start to see it level off a bit."

But it's a good time to pick up a bargain. "Good quality cattle are on the market in numbers," he said.

Topics:  cattle meatworks

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