Sheep marts: Trade disappoints as factory cuts are felt around the ring

The sheep trade has been somewhat easier this week following factory price cuts on spring lambs, hoggets and cast ewes on Monday.

A number of sheep factories moved to drop the spring lamb price by 50c/kg and the hogget price by 30c/kg, a move that has been felt in sheep marts across the country.

Sheep met with a more difficult trade in Kilkenny Mart, Cillin Hill on Monday, according to the Mart’s Auctioneer George Candler.

Candler said there was a tougher trade for all the sheep on offer, but spring lambs were particularly disappointing, with new season lambs selling from €2.50-2.65/kg, down from a high of €2.90c/kg last week.

The hogget price has also eased in the Kilkenny venue, with butcher hoggets back by 5-15c/kg on last week, trading from €2.15-2.25/kg. On the average 55kg hogget, this is a price drop of €2.75-5.50.

The Auctioneer also said that cull ewes met with a sluggish trade, with the top lot making €115, while ewes with lambs made €170-200.

Sample spring lamb prices:
  • 50kg: €130 or €2.60/kg
  • 48kg: €127 or €2.65/kg
  • 46kg: €119 or €2.59/kg
  • 45kg: €113 or €2.51/kg

Raphoe Mart

The sheep trade was also a little easier in Raphoe Mart on Monday. According to the Mart Manager Anne Harkin, spring lambs sold from €115-132 each, back from €120-137 last week.

Hogget prices were also a little easier, with lots making €115-132 each, in the corresponding sale last week these lots sold to a top price of €132 each.

However, cast ewe prices remained similar at €70-128 each, while ewes with twin lambs sold to a top price of €258.

Raphoe Prices:
  • Spring lambs 40-50kg – €120-137 each
  • Hoggets – €120-133.50 each
  • Dry ewes – €80-130 each

Mountbellew Mart

Spring lambs were also easier in Mountbellew Mart on Saturday, the Mart Manager Marianne Higgins has said, as there was a bigger number of sheep on offer, with spring lambs trading from €2.39-2.71/kg.

However, despite the ease in demand for spring lambs, the hogget trade continued to remain firm, especially for the fleshed lots suitable for factory buyers, which sold from €1.91-2.66/kg.

Higgins also said there was a large entry of cast ewes on offer, with these lots meeting with a strong trade, particularly for the fleshed lots. Generally speaking these lots sold from €80-127 each.