550c/kg hogget prices continue

Like last week, factory buyers are continuing to offer 550c/kg to secure hoggets. As it stands, the majority of processors are offering base quotes of 530-545c/kg. However, in a bid to get numbers through the gates, a number are offering an additional 5-10c/kg to secure supplies.

When Quality Assurance and producer group bonuses are factored into the equation, it brings the prices achieved by farmers closer to 550-555c/kg – up 40-50c/kg on the corresponding week in 2017.

Reports also suggest that some farmers have achieved prices of 560c/kg when the marketed hoggets fall within the requirements of the Clean Livestock Policy for sheep.

Hogget quotes:
  • ICM Navan: 530c/kg + 10c/kg QA;
  • ICM Camolin: 530c/kg + 10c/kg QA;
  • Kepak Athleague: 545c/kg + 5c/kg QA;
  • Kildare Chilling: 540c/kg + 10c/kg QA.

Like the hogget market, ewe prices have also remained stable and the majority of processors are now offering 290-300c/kg to secure such stock.

Supplies

Hogget prices have strengthened over recent weeks and much of this increase can be linked back to a considerable contraction in supplies.

During the week ending February 18, some 45,939 sheep were slaughtered in Department of Agriculture approved sheepmeat export plants – down by 1,726 head or 3.6% on the previous week.

Source: Department of Agriculture

In addition, throughput reductions were also witnessed for hogget and cast (ewe and ram) slaughterings. During the week ending February 18, some 38,609 hoggets were slaughtered in Irish plants – down 605 head or 1.5% on the previous week. Ewe and ram slaughterings also declined by 13% to sit at 1,127 head.

Week-on-week sheep kill changes (week ending February 18):
  • Hoggets: 38,609 head (-605 head or -1.5%);
  • Ewes and rams: 7,324 head (-1,127 head or -13%);
  • Total: 45,939 head (-1,726 head or -3.6%).

The marts

Kilkenny Mart

Small numbers were reported at Kilkenny Mart, Cillin Hill, on Monday (February 25). And, according to the mart’s George Candler, that helped to generate an excellent trade all around.

At yesterday’s sale, hoggets peaked at €134/head. Butcher hoggets sold for €2.25-2.45/kg or €122-134/head, while factory hoggets sold for €2.30-2.51/kg.

Sample hogget prices:
  • 57kg: €131 or €2.30/kg;
  • 56kg: €134 or €2.39/kg;
  • 54kg: €131 or €2.43/kg;
  • 49kg: €123 or €2.51/kg;
  • 47kg: €116 or €2.47/kg;
  • 46kg: €113 or €2.46/kg.

In addition, cull ewes sold to a top price of €137, while ewes with lambs at foot traded at €164-224/unit.

Roscommon Mart

A small entry of sheep was on offer at last Wednesday’s sale in Roscommon Mart. However, there was an improvement in the hogget trade and prices peaked at €124.

Sample hogget prices:
  • 53.6kg: €125 or €2.33/kg;
  • 66.7kg: €124 or €1.86/kg;
  • 49.3kg: €121 or €2.45/kg;
  • 44kg: €107 or €2.43/kg;
  • 45.3kg: €107 or €2.36/kg;
  • 42.2kg: €105 or €2.49/kg.

Looking at the ewe trade, cast ewes made €82-130, in-lamb ewes sold for €138-160 and ewes with lambs at foot made €194-266.

Mountbellew Mart

Increased numbers of hoggets and cast ewes were on offer at Mountbellew Mart’s weekly sheep sale on Saturday last.

Heavy hoggets met an improved trade and sold for €120-125/head. Meanwhile, the lighter classes on offer sold at €81-93.

Sample hogget prices:
  • 40.6kg: €93 or €2.29/kg;
  • 52kg: €120 or €2.31/kg;
  • 45.5kg: €110 or €2.42/kg;
  • 54.8kg: €124 or €2.26/kg;
  • 53.5kg: €125 or €2.34/kg;
  • 36.4kg: €81 or €2.23/kg.

On the day, cast ewes traded at €74-116 and ewes with lambs at foot sold for €120-260.