Many hogget finishers may be experiencing symptoms of deja vu, as some factories have opted to knock hogget quotes by 10c/kg this week.

Hogget quotes are currently 480-500c/kg (excluding Quality Assurance bonuses), with many processors stepping back from the 490c/kg that was on offer last week.

A similar price drop was witnessed during the corresponding week in 2016, but at the time hogget quotes were sitting at 530-540c/kg.

And, when 2016 and 2017 quotes are compared, hogget finishers would have received an additional €11.25 on a 22.5kg hogget carcass last year (480c/kg versus 530c/kg).

Hogget quotes:
  • ICM Camolin: 480c/kg + 10c QA
  • ICM Navan: 480c/kg + 10c QA
  • Kepak Athleague: 485c/kg + 5c QA
  • Kildare Chilling: 500c/kg + 5c QA

Spring lamb quotes failed to reach the ‘necessary’ 700c/kg mark in the lead up to Easter. And, in a post-Easter market, the status quo of 590-600c/kg continues to remain in place.

Ewe prices also remain relatively unchanged, with many processors willing to offer 280-290c/kg to secure supplies.

Spring lamb quotes:
  • ICM Camolin: 590c/kg + 10c QA
  • ICM Navan: 590c/kg + 10c QA
  • Kepak Athleague: 600c/kg + 5c QA
  • Kildare Chilling: 600c/kg + 10c QA

Spring lamb throughput back 50%

Official figures from the Department of Agriculture show that some 5,185 lambs were slaughtered in approved sheepmeat export plants this year (up to the week ending April 9).

This is back over 5,200 head or 50% compared to the corresponding period in 2016.

However, the total kill for 2017 is currently running 11% or 70,752 head above 2016 levels. The majority of this increase is due to a rise in ewe, ram and hogget slaughterings.

Figures from the Department of Agriculture’s sheep kill database show that hogget supplies are up by 66,311 head (+13%). Ewe and ram throughput has increased by 11% or 9,500 head on 2016 levels.

Source: Department of Agriculture

Source: Department of Agriculture

Main markets

According to Bord Bia, demand remained steady in Britain last week in advance of the Easter break and throughput numbers have started to increase.

The SQQ live price for lamb in England and Wales made the equivalent of around 484ckg deadweight towards the end of the week.

In France, it says, some stability was reported in the market on the back of Easter demand and a number of retailers carried out promotions focusing on legs and striploins.