Last week’s sheep kill saw an increase on the week before – up over 2,500 head, figures from the Department of Agriculture Food and the Marine (DAFM) show.

Of the sheep killed, spring lamb throughput is continuing to increase, while hogget numbers continue to plummet.

The ewe and ram kill for the week ending May 9 saw a slight fall.

For the week ending May 9, 44,935 sheep were processed – which is an increase from the 42,381 sheep slaughtered the week before.

Hogget supplies continue to diminish, with yet again another drop in the number of hoggets processed during the week ending May 9.

In total, 18,307 hoggets were processed, which is down 2,040 head on the week before.

Spring lamb throughput continues to rise week-on-week, with the number of spring lambs slaughtered during the week ending May 9, accumulating to 20,194 – which is an increase of 4,797 head on the previous week.

Ewe and ram throughput also saw a slight decrease, with a total of 6,434 head processed – down 201 head on the week before.

  • Hoggets: 18,307 head (-2,040 or -10.02%);
  • Ewes and rams: 6,434 head (-201 or -3.02%);
  • Spring lambs: 20,194 head (+4,797 or +31.15%);
  • Total: 44,935 head (+2,554 or +6.02%).

Sheep kill to date

Taking a look at this year’s throughput figures to date, 811,467 sheep have been processed thus far.

Of that figure, 661,177 have been hoggets, while 53,040 have consisted of spring lambs.

Ewe and ram throughput makes up the rest at 97,154 head.

Data source: DAFM

If we compare figures to date this year, against the same period in 2020, we can see that the total number of sheep slaughtered is back 66,812 head.

80,243 fewer hoggets have been processed in comparison to the same period last year.

While 7,815 fewer ewes and rams have been slaughtered as well, with only spring lamb throughput seeing an increase on this time last year (up 21,174 head).

  • Lambs/hoggets: 661,177 head head (-80,243 or -11%);
  • Spring lambs: 53,040 head (+21,174 or +66%);
  • Ewes and rams: 97,154 head (-7,815 or -7%);
  • Total: 811,467 head (-66,812 or -8%).