Demand for spring lambs at marts has been very strong this past week, but prices have remained steady.

The number of spring lambs has been increasing at some marts this week, while at others, numbers remain the same. Either way, very few lambs are being left behind; present demand from factory agents for lambs, at times, could be described as insatiable.

The appetite has been so strong that factory agents have been happy to drop down in weights, as long as lambs possess a good cover of flesh.


Looking at the trade for spring lambs this past week, prices for heavy, 50kg lambs are generally moving above €170/head, with many selling from €172-176/head.

Excellent-quality lots above 50kg are pushing returns as high as €180/head at some sales.

Lambs in the 44-49kg weight bracket are attracting the greatest interest from factory agents and have been moving at prices ranging from €165-172/head in general. Again, excellent-quality lots that are weighing 47-49kg are hitting prices of around of €173-175/head.

Lighter lambs in the 40-43kg weight bracket are generally selling from a base of €150/head and pushing returns of €160-165/head. Again, flesh cover is a key determinant in the prices being paid for these lambs.

Light store lambs are few and far between, with fleshed lambs still not out in full-force yet.

Hogget numbers at marts continue to dwindle, with supplies at many sales falling to single digits.

Despite this, there’s no lack of demand for what hoggets remain. Prices for hoggets are generally running from €150/head up to €180/head, with weights ranging from 47-50kg up to as high as 60-65kg.

It’s generally hogget ewes commanding the higher prices in excess of €170/head.

The cull ewe trade remains in a very good place, with prices at marts for ewes over 100kg still hitting €200 and reaching highs of €215-235/head.

The majority of heavy ewes at marts are moving at prices of €170-195/head for 85-95kg ewes, with prices north of this confined, as mentioned, to 100kg plus ewes.