More beef farmers dipping into the store lamb market as ‘cattle are too dear at present’

There appears to be a stronger interest among beef farmers for store lambs this year.

The store lamb trade has been very strong over the last number of weeks and it is being helped by farmers who would normally be in the market for cattle this time of the year.

AgriLand spoke to a number of mart managers across the country and the general consensus was that there was a “strong and growing interest” among beef farmers for store lambs.

Mart managers did note that, on any given year, a number of beef farmers would normally buy store lambs anyway; however, they said that this year more beef farmers have “ramped up their interest in stores” as they think that, at the moment, “cattle are too dear to buy”.

One mart manager in the south-east of the country noted that there has been “a more noticeable number of beef farmers around the ring over the last few weeks looking for store lambs”.

Store lambs at Blessington Mart on Tuesday last August 11

Furthermore, mart managers also highlighted that the strong trade for store lambs over the last few weeks has been helped by beef farmers turning their interest towards store lambs.

Also, it is quite evident that sheep farmers have been drafting lambs earlier in account of the good trade, which is seeing light stores come into “fairly big money”.

AgriLand also spoke to farmers who would normally buy cattle this time of the year that have opted to dip into the store lamb market.

Again, the message was similar to what mart managers have been saying. Farmers believe that cattle are “too dear” and have, instead, gone down the route of buying in store lambs.

Although this is good for farmers selling stores, mart managers believe that if this continues, lambs could be very scarce in the back end of the year.