NI calf registrations in decline in January 2024  

Livestock & Meat Commission March 13, 2024

CALF registrations in Northern Ireland (NI) have experienced a year-on-year decrease of 6.9% in the opening month of 2024, the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC) has reported.

Data from the Northern Ireland Food Animal Information System (NIFAS) confirms that a total of 40,587 calves were registered in January 2024, back 6.9% from the corresponding month last year.

Commenting LMC agricultural market analyst, Claire McAnearney said, “Calf registrations are down across the board for all breed categories, but what we have seen is that Aberdeen Angus is likely to remain a clear top choice of sire selection going into 2024.”

Supporting this fact, Claire referred to registration statistics that point to a marginal decline of 2.2% year-on-year for Aberdeen Angus (AA) sired calves registered for the month of January in NI.

Claire added, “The second most popular calf breed in the opening month of this year was Limousine, followed closely by Charolais. Early indications show that we are unlikely to see any major shake up to these leaders for sire choice in the early part of 2024.”

Like the beef sector, the dairy sector also recorded a decline in calf registrations during the aforementioned period. January totalled 25,733 head of beef sired calves, a drop of 7% from January 2023, and 14,584 head of dairy sired calves, back 6.7% from January 2023.

Concluding Claire said, “The opening month for 2021, 2022 and 2023 recorded year-on-year increases in the number of calf birth registrations, making 2024 the first change up for books in some time. As we move further into 2024, we will continue to monitor and report on calf registrations with timely updates shared in the Market Information section of our website .”