Last Saturday’s production sale at Blessington Mart from seven of the country’s leading Suffolk flocks saw a full clearance of the 83 females. “It never happened before that we got a 100% clearance and prices on average were up €300 a head on last year,” said Tom Bailey.

The recent pattern of foreign interest in Irish pedigree sheep was again evident, with Irish Suffolks exported to Germany (9), Scotland (6), England (4), Wales (3) and Belgium (2). In addition, 15 were purchased by breeders from NI.