The sheep trade is starting the week in a steady manner for the first time in over four weeks.

Base quotes remain in a range of €6.30/kg to €6.40/kg, with some plants exhibiting a bit more of an appetite for sheep.

This saw prices in some plants firm marginally at the end of last week, with quotes increasing by 5c/kg on average to producers with greater negotiating power.

Top prices are reported in the region of €6.45/kg to €6.50/kg, with some prices rising to €6.55/kg to €6.60/kg by merit of group or conformation bonuses.

Steady throughput

Throughput is reported as steady overall, with the sheep kill holding strong numerically.

However, some procurement agents continue to report poor slaughter performance leading to lower average carcase weights.

This is also evident in the live trade, where well-fleshed butcher-type lambs are attracting a premium on price.

The stability in the trade is reported to be helped by the sharp reduction in prices in Britain abating.

The average standard quality quotation (SQQ) price for lambs firmed by approximately 20p/kg at the end of last week and was reported by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) in the region of £2.50/kg or €2.96/kg at Monday’s exchange rate of 84.3p to the euro.