The price of Scotch lamb continued its rise, as abattoirs were paying £4.55/kg up to 21kg for R grade lambs. The live trade was also strong, with a high of £2.23/kg at St Boswell’s Mart in the Borders.

The official Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) price for an R3 lamb is £4.63/kg, which is similar to last week. The GB kill stood at nearly 49,000, which is down 1,000 on the week.

Live lamb market

St Boswell’s Monday prime lamb sale rocketed up 11p/kg to £2.23/kg for the 1,272 lambs. Lanark Mart also enjoyed a strong trade, with nearly 3,000 lambs being sold to an average of £2.23/kg. Ayr Mart sold over 1,500 lambs where the price was closer to last week at £2.13/kg.

Castle Douglas on Tuesday sold over 1,000 lambs to an average of £2.18/kg. Last Thursday, United Auctions sold nearly 4,000 lambs where the average price was £2.10/kg, up 4p/kg. Thainstone’s sale average was £2.05/kg, which was a rise of 13p/kg.

Store lambs

Over 1,100 lambs were sold at Thainstone, with an average of £65.81, which is back less than £1/head on the week.

Prime cattle

The clean cattle price continued to show strength this week, as abattoirs paid between £3.80/kg and £3.90/kg for R grading continental steers.

The official AHDB price for R grading steers for the week ending 21 November was £3.93/kg, up 3p/kg on the week. Same-grade heifers rose 1p/kg to £3.93/kg and young bulls were down 1p/kg to £3.74/kg.

This will be the last week that cattle will be killed in time for Christmas.

Scotland is currently reported as having a 10p/kg premium over same-grading English cattle, according to the AHDB.

The Scottish price from the AHDB for an 0-4L cow was £2.49/kg, which is up 5p/kg on the week. But demand should be rising as lockdown begins to ease in England, resulting in stronger hotel and restaurant trade.

Strong store cattle

Six-hundred-and-ninety store cattle were sold by United Auctions Stirling last week, which was half the previous week. Steers averaged £2.15/kg, which is down 5p/kg, and heifers averaged £2.09/kg, which is down 5p/kg.

Thainstone sold 690 store cattle last Friday, where the average price paid was £2.24/kg for steers, which was up 2p/kg, and £2.18/kg for heifers, which was also up 2p/kg.

Lawrie and Symington sold 358 store cattle this Tuesday on their fortnightly sale. The steers averaged £2.15/kg and the heifers averaged £2.09/kg.

There was a pen of dairy bullocks which went for £945/head or £1.61/kg.

The top prices on the day were £1,235 for a Limousin heifer and £1,200 for an Aberdeen Angus steer.