Hoggets make up to €272/head at Blessington Mart

Blessington Mart held its weekly sheep sale yesterday, Tuesday, August 11, which also saw the first breeding sale of the year for the Wicklow-based mart.

In account of the closure of Kildare Chilling due to a coronavirus outbreak last week, which has resulted in the meat processing plant to remain closed this week, it resulted in little to no factory-type lambs present at the sale.

Instead, the sale predominately consisted of breeding sheep and store lambs, along with a number of feeding-type ewes.

Despite the lack of factory sheep at the sale, there was still a good entry of sheep on the day and the breeding stock in particular were met with a strong demand.

Speaking to AgriLand about the trade on the day, the mart manager, John Doyle, said: “We had our first breeding sale of the year and overall it was a good trade all round.

There was a strong farmer presence around the pens for both ewe hoggets and ewe lambs.

“Over in the hogget section, the top price was €272/head, with many pens selling from €172/head up to €195/head.

“Furthermore, a couple of lots broke past the €200/head mark and made €220-230/head.

“Over in the ewe lamb section, again, it was obvious that farmers were keen on securing good-quality ewe lambs for the upcoming breeding season and that was reflected in the price.”

John added: “The top price for ewe lambs was €165/head. In general, these lots made anywhere from €110/head up to €160/head.

“In terms of store lambs, similarly, there was a good trade for these types and prices for these lots ranged from €60/head for 28kg lambs up to €95/head for more forward-type store lambs weighing 41kg.

“We didn’t have many heavy ewes on offer today. It was predominately made up of store ewes and, in general, there was a good demand for these lots. Prices varied from just over €60/head up to over the €100/head mark.”