The sheep trade over the last number of weeks has well and truly exploded into life and is now seeing lamb prices reach as high as €7.40/kg and possibly even more, in cases, for larger lots.

Looking back to this time last year, lamb prices were also on the rise; however, prices then, when compared to now, vary greatly.

Factories were offering up to €5.60/kg this time last year for lambs, with base prices ranging from €5.20-5.40/kg up to a carcass weight of 22kg.

Taking the higher price of €5.60/kg at a 22kg carcass weight, producers were securing returns of just over €123/head.

Fast forward 12 months to now, and the majority of lambs are moving at prices at and above €7.00/kg.

So, if we take the higher price of €7.40/kg for lambs offered by factories currently, producers are securing returns of nearly €163/head on a 22kg carcass.

Therefore, when compared to the same period as last year, lamb prices are up nearly €40/head on a 22kg carcass.

While producers securing deals to weights of 22.5-23kg are pushing returns of €166.50-€170/head.

Although input costs have increased over this 12-month period it’s hard to find negatives at present with prices at an unprecedented high.