Slaughter lambs finish week firm to cheaper on quality in NSW saleyards

Sheep Central, July 4, 2016
These early April shorn Merino wether lambs, 10.8kg cwt and mostly score 2, sold for $75 at Woorndoo in Victoria on AuctionsPlus last week.

These early April shorn Merino wether lambs, 10.8kg cwt and mostly score 2, sold for $75 at Woorndoo in Victoria on AuctionsPlus last week.

SLAUGHTER lambs sold firm to cheaper on quality in saleyards late last week, while restocking interest for mainly scanned ewes continued on AuctionsPlus.

In the first major price movements down in months, at Cowra in New South Wales light lambs sold $10 easier, medium and heavy trades were firm to $7 cheaper and heavy lamb prices fell $2-$5.

However, lamb prices held firm at the Griffith saleyards on Friday, where the agents yarded 12,600 lambs, 8500 more than last week, and 2000 sheep, 900 more.

The National Livestock Reporting Service attributed the significant increase in lambs to the drier week allowing producers to move stock more easily. Lamb quality was again mixed with lambs showing the effects of the cold wet conditions. There was a handy offering of well-finished heavy and extra heavy weight lambs available. The usual buyers competed in a fairly steady market.

Light lambs were fully firm selling from $112-$125. Trade weights held fairly steady with quality affecting price. Prices ranged from $125-$168. Heavy and extra heavy weight lambs were firm to fractionally dearer dependant of quality. Heavy lambs sold from $159-$179. Extra heavy weights made $178-$232. Carcase prices ranged from 626-690c/kg. Merino lambs sold from $126 to $181.

The sheep were mostly Merinos and quality was very mixed. Merino ewes sold from $88-$155. Crossbreds made $86-$140. Merino wethers sold from $94-$114.

Cowra’s trade lambs firm to $7 cheaper

At the Cowra saleyards, the agents yarded 8000 lambs, 1297 more than last week, and 710 sheep, 250 fewer.

The NLRS said lamb quality was not quite to the standard of previous sales, with more variation. Most were trade and heavy weights, with a limited store lamb offering. The usual buyers operated and competition was reasonable in a cheaper market compared to the very dear sale last week.

Light lambs sold to processors averaged $119, down $10, while stores averaged $84. Medium and heavy trade weights were firm to $7 cheaper and averaged from 630-650c/kg cwt. Most heavy trade weights sold from $140-$155. Heavy weight lambs were $2-$5 easier at around 630-675c/kg. A few pens of extra heavy weight lambs made $185-$199.

Sheep quality was very mixed. Light Merino ewes averaged $53. Heavy ewes were $5 dearer and averaged $111 or 365c/kg. Merino wethers sold to $112.

NLRS lamb indicators mostly firm

After Friday’s saleyard sales, the NLRS Eastern States Daily Indicators for lambs, their daily and weekly changes, were: restocker 603c/kg, down 3 cents, down 29c; Merino 592c/kg, up 2c, up 27c; light 609c/kg, down 3c, up 8c; trade 644c/kg, down 1c, up 11c; heavy 656c/kg, no change, up 12c. The national trade lamb indicator lost 1 cent to 643c/kg and the heavy indice closed the week firm on 656c/kg.

The ESDI for mutton finished the week 2 cents down on 412c/kg and the national indicator was unchanged on 411c/kg.

AuctionsPlus offering down almost 11,000

AuctionsPlus offered 21,608 sheep and lamb numbers last week, 10,992 fewer than the previous week.

The online selling platform said supply has shortened as the cold winter weather increased across the eastern states, but producers were still hungry to restock flocks.

Merino ewes were strongly represented online, with young ewes selling from $72.50-$187 and averaging $130.25. The top-price line of 2-2.5 year-old early October shorn Allala blood ewes from Lock in South Australia weighed 67kg lwt, were mostly score 3 and 4, and station-mated to Merino rams.

Older Merino ewes also featured well this week, selling from $90 to $132.50 and averaging $112.50. At Coonabarabran in NSW 490 rising six year-old mid-March shorn Wanolga and Karbullah blood ewes, 46.7kg lwt and score 1, and scanned to Poll Dorset rams sold for $132.50. At Bourke a line of 370 1.5-5.5 year-old December and February shorn Merino ewes, 53.7kg lwt and station-mated to Border Leicester rams, sold for $140.

Fewer Merino wethers were offered online last week, but this intensified bidding activity from restockers. Merino wether lambs sold from $75-$108.50 averaging $87. The 808 top-priced wethers sold in two lines were late June shorn August-October drop Bogo blood lambs from Gunning in NSW.

Ewe lambs dominated the first cross ewe category and restockers pushed up prices to $182-$216, averaging $201. The top-priced line of 180 early February shorn 10-11 month-old lambs were scanned in lamb 152 percent to Poll Dorset rams at Cooma in NSW. The 50kg lambs were mostly score 3. Another 360 in the offering of the same description made $210.

Some stand-out lines of Lambpro composite ewe lambs from Eurongilly in the Riverina sold for $169-$171. The top line of 206 11-12 month-old early January shorn ewes weighed 48.7kg lwt, were score 3, and scanned in lamb 100pc to Poll Dorset rams. Another 412 in two lines of the same description made $169. A line of 140 early March shorn 13-14 month-old first cross ewe hoggets at Noradjuha in Victoria and station-mated to White Suffolk rams sold for $201. The score 2 and 3 lambs weighed 46.2kg lwt.

A line of 605 late November shorn 2-6 year-old White Suffolk cross ewes at Eurongilly, NSW, with 5-11 week-old Poll Dorset lambs sold for $224. The 72.2 kg ewes were mostly score 2.

Several Dorper ewe lines sold online last week, making to $150 for a small line of unjoined seven month-old Amarula bred lambs at Gravesend, NSW. In Fifield, NSW, 11-12 month old White Dorper ewes and their lambs sold for $176. At Muckadilla in Queensland 400 10-17 month-old White Dorper ewes, 42.1kg and score 2, and station-mated to White Dorper rams, sold for $145.

Store lambs weighing under 35kg lwt sold for $85-$103 to average $96.25 or 291c/kg lwt including skin value. Over 35kg lambs made $95-$124. The top priced line of 195 October-November drop mid-December shorn Poll Dorset cross lambs at Goulburn in NSW weighed 17.8kg cwt and were mostly score 2.

Sources: AuctionsPlus, MLA, NLRS.


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