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Lamb prices plunge below the €5/kg mark

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Hoggets at Ballinasloe Mart

Hoggets at Ballinasloe Mart

Sean Dennehy

Sean Dennehy

/

Hoggets at Ballinasloe Mart

Factory quotes for lamb have slumped under the €5/kg mark in some plants for the first time this year.

Farmers have seen 50c wiped off lamb quotes over the past fortnight - this equates to a €10/hd price cut on a 20kg carcass.

Both ICM plants cut their quotes by 30c/kg over the weekend, leaving them on €4.90/kg - plus an additional 10c/kg for quality assured (QA) stock. Meanwhile, Kepak Athleague's €5.05+15c/kg is 20c/kg less than last week.

Lamb prices had held up well until this point, with French imports of Irish lamb up 4pc this year, and overall sheepmeat exports up by 3pc.

Underpinned

Eid al-Adha, which came to an end yesterday, had underpinned the trade in recent weeks and Bord Bia has reported that demand for Irish lamb was very high in the lead-up to the Muslim festival.

IFA national sheep chairman Sean Dennehy said a lot of lambs were sold over the last few weeks, with 74,535 sold in the past week alone. He said the lamb kill is running 14pc ahead of last year or up 75,000. "This should mean supplies will be tighter in the coming weeks, and this should help steady the trade," he said.

"I think farmers that have gone through their lambs and taken two or three pulls already, have large numbers moved, and they will want to see the trade settle before they move again."

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