Farm Ireland

Sunday 25 February 2018

Lamb prices fall €15/hd in fortnight

Factory prices have tumbled for a second week
Factory prices have tumbled for a second week

Joe Healy

Lamb prices have tumbled for the second week in a row, with prices back €15/hd over the last fortnight.

This week factory quotes dropped 20-30c/kg or by €4-5/hd. This comes on the back of a 50c/kg cut in quotes last week, which equated to a reduction of €10/hd.

While many of the factories were not quoting for lamb yesterday, the indications are that prices are back 20-30c/kg to €5.80/kg. Hogget prices were also back 30c/kg, or €7/hd, with most factories quoting around €5.20/kg.

Factories have blamed the falling prices on poorer demand in France and big numbers of hoggets still to be killed.

However, the poor factory trade was not reflected in the marts, where prices appear to have held up, with a particularly strong trade in Fermoy yesterday. Lambs made up to €98 with the €1/kg. Quite an amount of pens made between €130-146, in a range from €78-98 over the weight. A price range of €100-120 bought most of the hoggets.

The difficulties in the sheep trade were mirrored in the cattle rings, with most categories back 10c/kg or €40-50/hd.

Light steers under 400kg were back by between 6-10c/kg at €2.40-3.05/kg.

The 400-600kg lots sold for €2.20-2.80/kg, while the heavier types made €2.20-2.50/kg. Plainer steers moved at €1.85-1.95/kg. Store heifers were selling for €2.30-2.85/kg; lots over 600kg made €2.20-2.55/kg.

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Weanling bull prices were also weaker. Lighter lots under 300kg were back by 4-9c/kg at €2.55-3.25/kg. Heavier bulls were down by 1-6c/kg and selling for €2.25-2.90/kg. Poorer types sold for €1.85-1.95/kg.

The trade for calves remains strong, but there is a big variation in prices. Friesian bulls in Carnew sold for €60/hd to €245/hd depending on age and quality.

Indo Farming