The cull ewe trade continues in an excellent vein of form. The advent of online bidding has shed much more light on the liveweight of cull ewes.
Top-quality, large-framed, fleshed ewes weighing from 90kg to 105kg are selling in a price range of €140 to €170, while heavier and excellent-quality lots are exceeding this range and selling to €190 or even higher in isolated cases.
Fleshed ewes weighing 80kg to 85kg are trading from €115 to €135 on average, while fleshed lots weighing upwards of 70kg are in most cases topping €100 per head.
Lots with a very poor cover of flesh are selling from €70 to €85 on average. Scottish Blackface ewes are selling from €1/kg for average-quality lots to €20 to €25 over the weight for heavier, fleshed ewes.
Top-quality spring lambs weighing 45kg to 50kg are trading from €170 to in excess of €185 to €190 in isolated instances
The trade for hoggets and spring lambs has also firmed, with prices increasing anywhere from €3 to €6 per head on the previous week.
Top-quality spring lambs weighing 45kg to 50kg are trading from €170 to in excess of €185 to €190 in isolated instances, with butcher and wholesale buyer activity holding strong.
There is also a wide differential for lighter lots weighing 42kg to 44kg and these are trading anywhere from €150 to as high as €170 to €180, with quality and kill-out potential having a big influence on prices paid.
Hogget supplies have tightened and this is adding more life to what is an already competitive trade.
Heavy fleshed hoggets weighing upwards of 52kg are selling in the main from €170 to €178, with select lots of top-quality ewe hoggets or heavy hoggets selling to €180 to €185.
Hoggets weighing 45kg to 48kg range on average from a starting point of €140 to €145 for plainer-quality types to €160 and higher for the better-quality types.
Twin-lamb lots remain at a price of €220 to €280 for good-quality outfits
The most variation is evident in lighter types, with hoggets around the 40kg mark selling anywhere from €115 to €145.
The trade for ewes with lambs at foot is unchanged. Twin-lamb lots remain at a price of €220 to €280 for good-quality outfits, selling back to €150 to €180 for poorer-quality crossbred lots.
Single lamb lots range from €130 to €180 on average, with young ewes and a quality lamb selling to €220 to €230.