IT'S been a long time coming and the desired result is still a long way off, but local cattle prices are finally trending upwards.
Ray Donovan Stock and Station Agents director Ray Donovan said export cattle sold well at yesterday's sale.
"Export cattle were a bit dearer - the cows and bullock sold to a stronger trend," he said.
"They were five to 10 cents dearer at times."
Export cattle numbers were higher, with vendors nearing the end of the season.
"People who have fat cattle are keen to sell and there has been a bit of a rise in the market too," he said.
"We've got good competition on the export cattle."
Mr Donovan said unfortunately the good news wasn't spread across the entire market.
"We are having a hard time selling young cattle," he said.
Mr Donovan said there were a few restock orders coming up from the south, but a strong positive turn
around would still be months away.
"Things are slowly picking up," he said.
"It will get better but it just might take a bit longer than everyone hoped. We just need more rain.
"We need to get feed in the paddocks both locally and out of the area for people to come to buy cattle."
Breeders for sale
MORE than 400 select young breeders will go up for auction at the saleyards in South Grafton tomorrow.
The Nettle Creek Invitational Commercial Female Sale features young breeding stock from Michael and Elizabeth Fahey's Copmanhurst Bizzy Brahman Stud.
The sale will be hosted by Ray Donovan Stock and Station Agents and George and Fuhrmann Real Estate Casino.
Ray Donovan Stock and Station Agents director Ray Donovan said the Fahey family owned about half of the cattle that would be sold on the day.
"All the cattle are bred well and present very well," Mr Donovan said.
"They're all very, very good young breeder cattle."
The annual sale generally attracts plenty of attention.
"With the conditions the way they are, it could be a buyer's market," he said.
"But with the quality of these cattle, the prices should go alright too."
Mr Donovan said the sale would attract buyers from up and down the coast.
"Anyone wanting to replace their females now, with the rise in the cow market, could sell their old cows and put these good heifers in their place," he said.
Last year's invitational sale took place just after a flood, but prices were strong despite the deluge.
"This time around, it's the opposite - it's dust," Mr Donovan said.
The auction starts at 10am tomorrow.