By Beckie Wilson

beckie.wilson@age.co.nz

Going once, going twice, sold – top prices matched with quality offerings made for happy vendors and purchasers at yesterday’s weaner fair at the Masterton Saleyards.

The annual Masterton and Martinborough weaner steer and bull sale drew buyers from across the North Island seeing cattle selling at top prices.

PGG Wrightson area livestock manager Steve Wilkinson said the quality of the weaners were such that prices were up on last year.

Farmers putting in their bids at Masterton’s weaner steer and bull sale yesterday PHOTO/BECKIE WILSON

“Vendors were very happy with the prices achieved, and the purchasers were also pretty happy — they got to get some good lines of quality cattle.”

Quality was very good amongst the 2100 steers and 100 bulls, with top lines being sold for $1000 to $1100 a head, up about $150 on last year, he said.

Purchasers herded in from across the North Island from as far as Pukekohe, King Country, and Manawatu, “and a few locals as well”.

The strong attraction for buyers was in part due to contributions from good grass growth throughout the lower North island resulting in good quality stock.

“People come to Wairarapa because the cattle ship really well up to the northern parts of the country.

“It is also to do with the positive outlook for beef at the moment,” he said.

Farmers were willing to invest more in cattle because the return was greater as beef cattle prices were buoyant in the North Island, he said.

The heavier cattle sold for around $3.80-$4.00 kg liveweight, medium cattle $4.20 to $4.40 kg, and lighter cattle $4.50 kg. The weaner heifer fair is on today at the saleyards situated Norfolk Rd.