Sheep trade: Processors increase prices as supplies tighten

There has been an increase in base quotes being offered by meat processing facilities this week, as supplies continue to tighten.

This week, Kepak Athleague is the biggest mover in terms of price – offering 25c/kg more compared to last week. This brought its price to 525c/kg.

Irish Country Meats and Kepak Athleague have increased their base quotes by 5c/kg and 10c/kg respectively.

A spokesperson for one factory, in particular, has said: “Supplies are tight and are more than likely going to stay that way for the foreseeable future.”

Farmers involved in producer groups are securing prices of up to 560c/kg (up to a carcass weight of 22.5kg).

Otherwise, farmers are securing prices of between 510c/kg and 540c/kg including quality assurance (QA) bonuses.

As of now, farmers are securing returns of between €114/head and €121/head.

Quotes

This week, Kildare Chilling (Monday quote) is offering a base price of 530c/kg + 10c/kg QA – up 10c/kg on last week (payable up to a carcass of 22.5kg).

Irish Country Meats (Monday quote) is offering a base price of 500c/kg + 10c/kg – up 5c/kg on last week (payable up to a carcass of 22.5kg).

And, finally, Kepak Athleague (Monday quote) is offering a base price of 525c/kg + 15c/kg – up 25c/kg on last week (payable up to a carcass of 22.5kg).

Overall, when the QA is factored in, this leaves quotes at 510-540c/kg.

In addition, cast ewes are making 280-300c/kg in sheep processing plants.

Spring lamb quotes:

  • Kepak Athleague: 525c/kg + 15c/kg QA;
  • Kildare Chilling: 530c/kg + 10c/kg QA;
  • Irish Country Meats: 500c/kg + 10c/kg QA.

Cast ewe quotes:

  • Kepak Athleague: 280c/kg;
  • Kildare Chilling: 290c/kg + 10c/kg QA;
  • Irish Country Meats: 280c/kg.

Throughput

During the week ending Sunday, January 12, the number of lambs/hoggets processed increased by 7,318 head and amounted to 48,286.

Cast (ewe and ram) supplies at Department of Agriculture approved sheep export plants stood at 8,648 – an increase of 2,827 head – for the week ending January 12.

Week-on-week sheep kill supplies (week ending January 12):

  • Hoggets/lambs: 48,286 head (+7,318 or +17.9%);
  • Ewes and rams: 8,648 head (+2,827 or +48.5%);
  • Total: 56,934 head (+10,145 or +21.7%).

Furthermore, overall supplies increased by 10,145 head during the week ending January 12.

Year-on-year sheep kill changes (week ending January 12):

  • Hoggets: 89,254 head (+4,317 or +5.1%);
  • Ewes and rams: 14,469 head (-3,445 or -19%);
  • Total: 103,723 head (+872 or +1%).

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