Last week’s sheep kill (week ending June 4) witnessed a sizeable increase on the week before, with spring lamb throughput seeing an increase of over 8,000 head on the previous week.

Supplies of hoggets continue to get smaller with each passing week.

Figures from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) show that 54,335 sheep were processed last week, representing an increase of 5,666 head from the week before.

The number of hoggets continues to decline, with 10,821 head slaughtered last week; this is a decrease of 2,533 head from the week prior.

Ewe and ram throughput edged back again, witnessing a decrease last week of 276 head and totalling 5,812 head.

However, spring lamb supplies continue to rise, totalling 37,681 last week, which represents an increase of 8,464 head on the previous week.

Week-on-week sheep kill (week ending June 4):

  • Hoggets: 10,821 head (-2,533 or -18.96%);
  • Ewes and rams: 5,812 head (-276 or -4.53%);
  • Spring lambs: 37,681 head (+8,464 or +28.96%);
  • Total: 54,355 head (+5,666 or +11.64%).

Sheep kill to date

Taking a look at this year’s throughput figures to date, 1,147,188 sheep have been processed so far.

Of that figure, 876,278 have been hoggets, 154,019 were spring lambs, with the rest made up of ewes and rams (116,807) and a small portion of light lambs (84 head).

Source: DAFM

If we compare figures to date this year, against the same period in 2021, we can see that the total number of sheep slaughtered is up over 145,600 head; 187,089 more hoggets have been processed, while 5,836 fewer ewes and rams have been slaughtered.

Spring lamb throughput remains down on this time last year by over 35,500 head.

Year-on-year sheep kill changes (week ending June 4):

  • Hoggets/lambs: 876,278 head (+187,089 or +27%);
  • Ewes and rams: 116,807 head (-5,836 or -5%);
  • Spring lambs: 154,019 head (-35,545 or -19%);
  • Total: 1,147,188 head (+145,688 or +15%).