Increased grass supply and a high beef price have been cited for rocketing store lamb prices, according to Eric Driver of Tullow Livestock mart.

The number of farmer customers around the ring has increased and they all seem to want store lambs, he said.

“The increased grass supply and the strong beef trade are forcing farmers to purchase store lambs.”

The store lamb trade has rocketed in Tullow with good bunches of stores sold for €2.50-2.60/kg.

Factory agents are also having to shell out €6-10 on top of last week’s prices to acquire their lots with the majority now selling for €98-106.

There was also a very bright start to Tullow’s first breeding ewe sale this year. Hogget ewes made €195 while the trade for aged ewes was strong as a result of the strong cast ewe market.

Three and four year old ewes sold for €150-170/head.

“We have seen an improvement in the cast ewe trade, especially for heavier lots. Confidence has returned to the cast ewe market,” he said.

Hungry lighter type cast ewes sold from €50/head while heavier lots were knocked down at a top price of €136/head.

Michael Lynch, Mart Manager in Kilkenny said there has been a big increase in lamb price this week.

“We had a very good trade with reduced numbers this week. There was a big change.”

“Lamb prices have increased in the region of €8-10/head, which is drastic considering they have dropped €15 over the last three weeks.”

Butchers lambs made €62-79 over with a bunch of eight lambs weighing 54kg sold for €127.

Factory lambs fell under the hammer for €55-65 over with the best bunch weighing 48kg and sold for €113.

Cast ewes generally made €65 for hungry feeder type ewes while heavier ewes made a tops of €135.

Roscommon mart reported a strong trade on Wednesday with prices up €7/head on last week. However, trade remained behind both Kilkenny and Tullow.

Factory lots cleared for €2.06-2.27/kg while the hammer fell at €1.80-2.08/kg for heavier factory type lambs.

lamb prices