Farm Ireland

Thursday 23 November 2017

Factories offer extra 15-20c/kg

Thank God for the sheep trade and more importantly the positive turnaround on quotes and prices. After the disappointing results and performances from our sportsmen in both Poland and New Zealand over the weekend it was a relief to hear good news yesterday morning.

Neither of our two teams in green could match their opposition on Saturday or Sunday but closer to home, the factories were really putting it up to each other.

Towards the weekend, I heard of a plant in the west ringing farmers and offering them €5 to 22kg to win back lambs they felt they were losing or may have already lost.

Yesterday morning, word had it that a plant in the east was frantically looking for lambs and was more than willing to negotiate on price and weight.

In any case, the quotes have increased by between 15-20c/kg across the board.

This leaves all processors offering a base of 500c/kg with all bar Moyvalley paying a bonus for the better quality types.

Kildare Chilling is also paying a 5c/kg bonus for any quality assured lambs. Factory sources say they are paying up to 20.5kg but shrewd sellers are negotiating weights well in excess of this.

Farmers need to be aware of this and bargain for bigger weights.

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To put figures on what extra weight is worth, take farmer A selling his lambs for €5 to 20.5kg. He gets a gross pay of €102.50/lamb.

Farmer B bargains for €5 to 22kg and receives €110/lamb. The extra 1.5kg was worth €7.50. If you decided to only bargain on price and leave the weight at the 20.5kg, you would have an impossible task of trying to negotiate an extra 36c/kg from the factory just to get the final price up to €110.

With only a trickle of hoggets at this stage, the west appears to be the best on quotes with quotes of 400c/kg. Kildare remain on a quote of 380c/kg while Moyvalley are on 350c/kg for the lighter hogget killing out between 14-18kg.

Commenting on the trade, the IFA's James Murphy said lamb prices had rebounded strongly, with factories paying up to 520c/kg to 21kg due to tight supplies and strong demand. He added that British prices have risen to a range of 580-590c/kg while the French market is returning 550c/kg.

Dawn Ballyhaunis and Kepak Hacketstown are leading the way for the cull ewes with quotes of 230c/kg. Both ICM plants are on 225c/kg while Kepak Athleague and Kildare are offering 220c/kg.

Indo Farming