Farm Ireland

Sunday 25 March 2018

Sheep Marts: Ewe hoggets lead the way as market performs well

Joe Healy

GOOD quality ewe hoggets are probably the best trade in an extremely strong performing sheep market. Numbers at the marts are high with farmers enjoying a new-found confidence in the industry as a result of a very positive year so far.

Baltinglass Mart had 2,000 sheep on offer on Saturday with a strong trade for all categories.

Lambs from 35-40kg made €45-75 over. Heavier types from 45-50kg made €43-50 over the weight. Ewe lambs suitable for breeding made €45-85 over to a top price of €120. Very good demand for store lambs meant farmers were paying €30-35 over to get what they wanted. Ewe hoggets sold from a top price of €175/hd back to €130. Older ewes suitable for breeding made €90-120/hd. Cast ewes sold for €55-95. Breeding rams made €150-300/hd.

Mountbellew had a very big sale with 2,500 sheep on offer due to increased numbers of lambs and breeding ewes. Trade for factory/butchers' lambs remained firm at €45-52 over the weight with very lively demand for ewe lambs pushing prices up to €62 over. Store lambs were a slightly easier trade. Breeding ewes and hoggets attracted most attention with the hoggets selling in a range of €110-177 while, depending on age and quality, the older breeders sold from €85-166/hd. Cull ewes were a similar trade to the previous week with strong demand for heavier ewes resulting in prices of as high as €137.

Another very large entry of 2,180 sheep was presented for sale at Wexford Farmers' Mart on Wednesday. Demand held very strong for all classes, especially for the breeding stock, with ewe hoggets selling from €122-166 and two-year-olds and upwards making from €85-152. Prices for ewe lambs ran from €85-104/hd. Butchers' and factory lambs sold for €85-107, reflecting a price of €40-55 over. Stores made €32-47 over. Cast ewes were selling for €45-106.

Prices for the pedigree rams ranged from €225-445 with the commercial rams selling for €170-325. Their sale tomorrow will include the Wexford Sheep Breeders' show and sale of pedigree rams.

Tullow Mart had 2,360 sheep on offer. Quality fat lambs were up €1/hd, making €42-56 over in a price range of €84-104. Store lambs made €26-44 over or €55-81/hd. Cast ewes' prices ranged from €35-116. There was great competition for the ewe hoggets on offer and prices went from €138 up to €172.

Tullow Sheep Breeders' Association's show and sale had a very strong trade for ewe lambs. The majority made €120-160 with a top price of €170/hd. Hogget ewes generally sold for €150-180 with €190 being the tops.

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