Prime & Store Sheep Reports

Lamb prices improve on AuctionsPlus as supply wanes

Sheep Central, March 25, 2024

These August-September 2023 drop store Merino wether lambs weighing 44.6kg lwt sold for $96 or 497ckg cwt at Brewarrina, NSW, on AuctionsPlus last week.

ALL lamb prices were firm to dearer on AuctionsPlus last week as producers offered fewer in most major categories.

AuctionsPlus said the increase in the average price for crossbred and composite/other breed lambs – up $16 to $116 – were the standout results, with both categories’ mean values increasing by $16/head last week to average $116/head. AuctionsPlus sold 51 percent of the 9564 crossbred lambs for $67-$146 and 86pc of the 2975 composite and other breed lambs for $110-$129.

At Griffith in NSW, 172 mixed sex September 2023 drop Poll Dorset cross store lambs weighing 41kg lwt sold for $146, or 355c/kg lwt, to a buyer in Cowra, NSW.

AuctionsPlus commercial sheep and lamb listings fell 24pc to 59,103 head last week and the crossbred lamb indicator rose 15pc to $116, boosting the AuctionsPlus restocker indicator by 49c/kg to 557c/kg.

There was a three percentage point drop in the overall clearance rate to 46pc; however, Value Over Reserve rose by $2 to average $7 across all listings.

AuctionsPlus said the results were pleasing in what has been a volatile market in recent weeks.

The average price paid for scanned in-lamb composite/other breed ewes lifted $35 to $158; however, joined shedding breed ewes averaged $143, down $31. AuctionsPlus said while the joined shedding breed ewes prices dropped, 75pc were sold. This was well above the 53pc clearance of the scanned in-lamb composite/other breed ewes. AuctionsPlus said this could indicate the shedding breed ewe vendors were more prepared to take a lower price, or had to let go of them due to seasonal or other reasons.

Listings fell significantly in New South Wales, with 13,190 fewer sheep and lambs sold from that state. Western Australia re-entered the market for the first time in five weeks, offering 1229 head. WA vendors have offered just 2829 head on AuctionsPlus in 2024. Purchases fell in all states apart from South Australia, where buyers bought an additional 1327 head. WA buyers bought 632 head, or about half what the state offered. Processor purchases declined again this week, with just 460 Merino wether lambs bought.

The 11,792 Merino wether lambs offered last week was a 23pc decrease. Prices responded favourably to the decreased supply, with a $10/head increase in the average price to $78 ($41-$96) and a 73pc clearance. At Brewarrina in NSW, 620 August 2023 drop Merino wether lambs weighing an average of 44kg lwt made $96, or 215c/kg lwt, with a buyer in Jamestown, SA.

The Merino ewe hogget offering fell 25pc to 4605 head. The average price paid fell $4 to $85/head. Clearance lifted from a low of 24pc the previous week to 57pc.

Note: Prices as at 5pm Thursday, 14th March 2024


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