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HomeFarming NewsSheep trade: Spring lambs hit €8.50/kg
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane hails from a sixth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the firm during its start-up phase in 2015.
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Sheep trade: Spring lambs hit €8.50/kg

Spring lamb and hogget prices April 2021

According to IFA national sheep chairman, Sean Dennehy, hogget prices have hit €8.00/kg as factories “struggle to match supplies with market demand”.

He said factories are paying €7.70-€8.00/kg for QA hoggets as Ramadan and strong supermarket sales of lamb drive the trade.

Dennehy said plants are paying up to €8.50/kg for spring lamb. In general, cull ewes are ranging from €3.20-€3.50/kg.

He commented that the strong factory demand is feeding through to the mart sales where agents and wholesalers are “competing strongly” for limited numbers of hoggets, lambs and cull ewes available.

“Prices are comparable to and, in cases, above what factories are offering some farmers.”

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The IFA sheep chairman said farmers should “sell hard” while moving hoggets, and lambs as they become fit.

Beef prices

According to IFA national livestock chairman, Brendan Golden, beef prices have strengthened a further 5c/kg as the weekend approaches.

He reported that a base price of €4.00/kg is “more freely available for heifers” and €3.95/kg for steers, with “higher prices” available for larger lots.

Golden said the reopening of the foodservice sector in the UK next week will increase demand for beef and is a key market outlet for Irish beef.

He highlighted the main market driver currently is the UK market, as the EU Young Bull price is lagging 9c/kg behind Ireland’s steer price.

“Numbers remain extremely tight both in the UK and Ireland, and the opening of additional outlets for beef sales must translate into meaningful price increases for beef farmers,” he said.

The IFA livestock chairman said demand for cull cows is strong, with P grades starting at €3.20/kg and moving upwards depending on numbers. He said good quality beef-bred cows are making up to €3.70/kg in some factories.

Young bulls are making €3.90 to €4.00/kg for R/U grades.

Golden said factory agents are competing strongly in marts for finished cattle, and prices are “easily comparing to what factories are offering some farmers”.

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