Pressure on farm-gate prices in 2019 has put a significant dampener on what has otherwise been a largely positive year. Prices have unfortunately dipped below the €100 per head mark that is seen by many as the minimum price required to deliver a worthwhile contribution to the farm business.

Favourable lambing conditions with more live lambs on the ground and a positive grazing season has at least improved performance at farm level in 2019. Ewes and lambs have been weaned in much better condition than previous years and this is putting a strong foundation in place to build from. This will only be achieved, however, if advance preparations are put in place for breeding and acted upon at the right time.