Sheep marts: Increasing factory prices driving the mart trade
A strong trade for all classes of sheep – especially for hoggets – was reported by mart managers across the country last week.
A number of in-lamb ewes and ewes with lambs at foot are being presented at marts, with prices for these lots making up to €160/head and €230/head respectively.
There is a strong demand for hoggets, with prices for these lots breaking past the €130/head mark. With meat processing facilities increasing their prices, and reports of supplies tightening, factory agents and farmers are battling it out for good-quality stock.
This, in turn, is driving up the prices, with over €105/head being achieved for forward store lambs.
Moreover, the cast ewe trade continues to pick up momentum, with mart managers reporting prices of up to €135/head for heavy ewes.
Baltinglass Mart held its weekly sheep sale on Saturday last, January 18. There was a strong trade for store lambs weighing between 30kg and 40kg, with prices up €1.00-2.00/head for these lots, according to the mart manager, Tom Coleman.
Prices for cast ewes were stronger by €2.00-4.00/head on last week, with prices ranging from €75/head up to €122/head.
Furthermore, there was a good demand for breeding ewes, with the top price in this section €160/head.
Last Saturday saw the first ewes and lambs at foot presented for sale at Baltinglass Mart, with prices for these lots making up to €200/head.
Sample lamb prices:
- Two lambs weighing 50kg sold for €120/head;
- Three lambs weighing 53kg sold for €118/head;
- Six lambs weighing 45kg sold for €110/head;
- 18 lambs weighing 46kg sold for €110/head;
- 11 lambs weighing 46kg sold for €106/head.
Raphoe Mart held its weekly sheep sale on Monday last, January 20. There was a large entry of sheep on offer, with an improved trade for hoggets, according to the mart manager, Anne Harkin.
There was a number of ewes and lambs at foot on offer, with these lots making up to €190/head. Moreover, ewes with two lambs at foot sold for up to €270/head.
Similar to recent weeks, there was a strong demand for cast ewes, with prices for these lots ranging from €60/head for lighter lots up to €130/head for heavier types of ewes.
- 30-35kg: €75-85/head;
- 36-40kg: €86-100/head;
- 40-44kg: €100-110/head;
- 44-49kg: €110-119/head;
- 50-56kg: €120-129/head.
There was a small entry of sheep on offer at Roscommon Mart, on Wednesday last, January 15. There was a strong demand for hoggets and cast ewes, with a full clearance, according to the mart manager, Maura Quigley.
The top price on the day was €124/head for a pen of hoggets weighing 57.3kg.
In the cast ewe section, prices for these lots ranged from €60/head up to €110/head.
Sample hogget prices:
- 64kg: €124/head;
- 57.3kg €124/head;
- 49.3kg: €123/head;
- 47.9kg: €117/head;
- 48.3kg: €116/head.
There was a large entry of 1,220 sheep on offer at Dowra Mart on Saturday last, January 18.
There was a ‘flying trade’ for all classes of sheep on offer, with a strong demand for hoggets, according to the mart manager, Patsy Smyth.
Factory-fit hoggets made from €110/head up to €124.50/head, with good-quality forward stores making from €90/head up to €109.50/head.
There was a special sale of in-lamb ewes on the day, with prices for these lots ranging from €170/head up to €221/head.
The top price on the day was €221/head for a pen of 10 twin-bearing ewes.
Sample factory-fit hogget prices:
- 25 hoggets weighing 55kg sold for €124.50/head;
- 22 hoggets weighing 53kg sold for €124/head;
- 10 hoggets weighing 52kg sold for €123.50/head;
- 17 hoggets weighing 50kg sold for €121/head;
- 11 hoggets weighing 48kg sold for €118.50/head.
Carnew Mart held its weekly sheep sale on Thursday last, January 16. There was a large sale of over 2,000 sheep on offer, with an excellent demand for all classes, according to the mart manager, David Quinn.
Moreover, prices were up €2.00-3.00/head on last week, with a top price of €132/head achieved for a pen of 10 ewe hoggets weighing 57kg.
With lamb/hogget supplies tight, strong prices were paid for any factory-fit animals, with 25 wether lambs weighing 48kg making €126.50/head. Furthermore, prices in this section ranged from €110/head up to €130/head.
In the cull ewe section, prices for these lots ranged from €78/head for feeding ewes up to €137/head for heavier types.
Sample hogget prices:
- 10 ewe hoggets weighing 57kg sold for €132/head;
- 22 ewe hoggets weighing 57kg sold for €130/head;
- 13 wether hoggets weighing 53kg sold for €123/head;
- 23 hoggets weighing 43kg sold for €107/head;
- 24 hoggets weighing 44kg sold for €113.50/head.