Factory quotes for hoggets continue to edge upwards with 550p/kg now available, an increase of 10p/kg on last week.

However, deals are being made at 560p/kg as processors look to keep pace with a vibrant mart trade, which has also seen prices strengthening by £2 to £3 per head during the first half of this week.

Marts are benefiting from improved competition between buying agents working for processors either side of the Irish border ahead of Ramadan getting under way next week.

Good-quality meal-finished hoggets are making £122 to £126, with heavier butcher-type lots pushing upwards to £130 at the top end of the market.

Plainer, lighter hoggets are trading between £112 and £118 depending on quality, weight and fat cover.

In the Republic of Ireland, hoggets are generally making €6.50/kg, which converts to around 550p/kg.

Local processors warn that the potential for further price rises is being hindered by the trade in Britain, where hogget prices have been stuck at 510-520p/kg in recent weeks.

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