Over 13,000 extra spring lambs slaughtered last week

Spring lamb numbers continue to increase, with an extra 13,460 slaughtered in Department approved plants during the week ending June 7.

According to the Department, this is a jump of almost 39% on the 34,941 slaughtered during the week ending May 30.

However, farmers selling spring lambs can expect to be quoted lower prices as the main processors have cut spring lamb prices by 10c/kg this week.

The majority of sheep factories are now offering base prices of 520-530c/kg for new season lambs.

Meanwhile, the number of hoggets slaughtered has posted another decrease.

According to the Department, the weekly hogget kill declined by 40% last week, with 2,724 fewer slaughtered at approved sheepmeat export plants.

However, despite the fall in hogget throughput, there was some increase in the number of ewes and rams slaughtered last week compared to the week before.

Official figures show a 2% increase in ewe and ram slaughterings, with cast throughput increasing by 133 head.

The Department also shows that the total number of sheep slaughtered during the week ending June 7 was 22.5% (10,868 head) higher than the week earlier.

The majority of this increase was due to a rise in spring lamb throughput.

Week-on-week sheep kill changes:
  • Hoggets: -2,742 head (-40%)
  • Spring lambs: +13,460 head (+38.5%)
  • Ewes and rams: +133 head (+2%)
  • Total: +10,868 head (+22.5%)

spring lamb

Cumulative sheep kill

According to the Department’s figures, the number of sheep slaughtered this year to the week ending June is up 8% on the same time in 2015.

The majority of this increase comes from a jump in both hogget and cast throughput, which have increased by 6% (3,369 head) and 30% (30,764 head) respectively.

But, there has been little change in the number of spring lambs slaughtered so far this year, only up by 2% compared to the same time last year.

The Department figures show that 178,761 spring lambs have been slaughtered in approved export plants so far this year. This is 3,369 head higher than the same time in 2015.