There was lots of talk surrounding factory price pressure before the sale in Tullow Mart on Tuesday, but the presence of buyers sourcing ram lambs for live export helped to maintain a strong floor under the trade.

Manager Eric Driver reported that lamb prices could have eased by an average of €1 to €2/head, but said that this came from a high level last week.

Lambs weighing 48kg upwards sold on average from €168 to €176, with a pen of quality lambs weighing 52kg hitting €179, while the hammer dropped at €188 to a butcher buyer for super-quality Charollais-cross lambs.

Lots weighing 44kg to 48kg sold from €162 to €172, with buying activity for ram lambs strong in this weight bracket.

Batch ram lambs

Producers are advised to batch suitable ram lambs together to entice live export interest.

Flesh cover and quality had a big say on prices paid for lambs weighing 40kg to 43kg. Fleshed lots sold from €158 to €165, with plainer types and those lacking flesh back to €148 to €150/head.

The store lamb trade started brightly, with plenty of demand present. Well-presented lambs weighing 33kg to 36kg sold in the region of €126 to €137, with plainer-quality and mixed bundles selling back to €100 to €110.

Large-framed ewes were an excellent trade with prices averaging from €180 to €230 and hitting as high as €260.

In pictures

This pen of 14 lambs weighed 37kg and sold for €131 (€3.54/kg).

This pen of six averaged 62.5kg and sold for €188 (€3/kg).

This pen of five lambs weighed 50kg and sold for €170 (€3.40/kg).

This pen of 22 store lambs weighed 37kg and sold for €131 (3.54/kg).

This large lot of 26 ewes weighed 87.7kg and sold for €188 (€2.14/kg).

These two ewes weighed 117kg and sold for €260 (€2.22/kg).

This consignment of over 100 store lambs weighed from 32kg to 36kg and averaged around the €132 per head mark.