Processors are trying to keep a lid on the lamb trade this week, cutting quotes by 10p/kg to a base of 510p/kg.
However, such moves are proving unsuccessful, as a robust mart trade continues to keep a floor under lamb prices, leaving processors struggling to source animals at the outlined quotes. To compete with the live ring, factories are opening on 520p/kg, with 5p to 10p/kg more on offer for finishers handling bigger numbers. In the marts, factory-fit lambs are making £108-£114, with heavier animals suited to the butcher and wholesale market making upwards of £120.
Marts are seeing a surge in store lambs being presented for sale and the advice to farmers off-loading animals is to be extremely tight on drafting criteria to maximise sale value.
Lambs that are batched with uniform size, flesh cover, conformation and sex are an easier sell, and commanding higher returns over mixed groups.