Tomorrow (Monday, July 12th) marks the beginning of peak buying week for the Eid festival starting on July 20th.
According to IFA sheep chairman, Sean Dennehy, factories and live shippers are competing “strongly” for lambs.
He said live shippers, in particular, are providing “real competition” with €3/kg to 50kgs offered to secure suitable lambs.
Dennehy stated that factories have had to increase prices again and deals to €6.60/kg are available with weights of 21.5kg also offered by factories.
“After the Eid festival, breeding sales and store buyers will underpin the trade, and with significant numbers of lambs already sold this year, it is very unlikely there will be any glut of lambs,” he said.
He said cull ewes are also in strong demand with €3.60/kg paid.
Dennehy said in mart sales, sheep prices have also strengthened for all types.
“Store lamb sales have started strongly with up to €70 over the weight paid for good quality lambs.”
“Cull ewe prices are particularly strong in marts with large-framed, well-fleshed cull ewes exceeding €200 in some sales.”
Sheep prices in Northern Ireland
According to the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC), sheep factories across Northern Ireland have pulled lamb prices by 80-120p/kg in the last six weeks.
It reported that base quotes from three major lamb processing plants ranged from 480-510p/kg for R3 grading lambs up to 21kg this week.
The commission believes that the Islamic festival, Eid al-Adha, taking place later this month, will boost lamb prices.
“As the quotes ease back, the paid prices have also declined in recent weeks with last week’s NI deadweight lamb price at 482.7p/kg. This is back 48.7p/kg from the previous week.”
“While there has been downward movement in the deadweight lamb trade in recent weeks, the prices still continue to trend above previous years. However, the differential has narrowed.”
More on sheep prices.