Factory quotations remain unchanged, but market prices are increasing

On the factory side of the sheep trade it was a case of ‘as was’ yesterday whilst shop lamb prices on the market front rose by €5-7/hd with reduced numbers pushing factory lambs up by around €2/h. hd.

Factory prices for lamb remain fixed at €6.00-6.20/kg.

Did some farmers feel that trade had stabilized and that the next move could be up?

However, these better market prices were more likely the result of lower sales due to plowing.

Kildare Chilling remains the top payer for lamb on paper, offering €6.20 + 10c/kg quality assurance.

On the culling side the two ICMs are still trading at €3.30/kg but Dawn and Kildare weren’t trading yesterday. When asked why, a Dawn representative simply replied, “The market has gone quiet.”

Which I took at face value as the markets they supply probably favor lamb over producing mutton at the moment.

Like anything in this business that could change overnight with a phone call.

Another factory representative said there had been an increase in unfinished sheep, adding: “It’s been a fun year. We kill many lambs from traditional sheep farmers who never feed them flour. This year their lambs are looking good but they are not dying well.”

ICSA’s Sean McNamara agrees, pointing out that even if they had chosen to feed, the costs involved could not be justified.

As sterling weakens against the euro, Sean also wonders if we could now see more northern lamb coming to the republic for direct slaughter.

Last week the Northern Livestock and Meat Commission reported factory prices for lambs equivalent to €5.66-5.71/kg; this week the range is between €5.49 and €5.60/kg.

British Prime Minister Liz Truss’ mini-budget destabilized the pound sterling last week, depreciating by 3p against the euro between Thursday and Sunday, from 87p to 90p.

Although it recovered to 89p yesterday, sterling’s volatility is a concern.

As for the actual prices for factory lambs, Mr McNamara quoted a range of €6.30-6.50/kg, with slaughter sheep selling at €3.30-3.50/kg.

The chairman of the IFA Sheep Committee, Kevin Comiskey, gave a broader picture and quoted prices of €6.10 to €6.50/kg for factory lambs up to 22 kg and €3.40 to €3.70/kg for slaughter sheep.

Around the markets

balting glass

Trade was better here, with shop lambs up €4-6/h – resulting in peaks scoring €110/h – while 35-40kg lambs improved by around €2/h.

Butcher types remained stable with 50-55 kg selling from 138-150 €/h.

On the breeding side, Suffolk ewe lambs sell for €145-150/hour and Suffolk ewe chicks for €145-180/hour.

Cheviot Hoggets have sold at a top price of €180/hr, with 2-4 year olds occasionally hitting €160/hr.

There has been a very heavy trade in cast ewes with prices between 75 and 128 €/hd. Breeding bucks made €200-450/hd.

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A smaller sell due to plowing gave the fat sheep trade much more bite than last week – the top call was 48kg and made €145/hd, a jump of around €5-7/hd.

Other example prices included 42-46 kg from €123-138/hour and 50 kg to €141/hour.

Store trade held up very well with 35-38kg selling at top prices of €97-108/h, while better 33-35kg shops were selling at €92-97/h.

The number of ewes born was low, with shops of 65-75 kg taking €93-130/h.

On the breeding side, Hoggets were priced at €210/hour with most selling for €170-190/hour. Lighter older ewes are selling from €130/hour while heavier ones are selling for €170/hour.


James Cooney said the average lamb price was “slightly better” by €2/hr, with his top call selling 51kg at €146/hr.

Samples across the board included 49kg at €140/hr, 46kg at €134/hr, 42kg at €116/hr. and 39 kg at 109 €/h

Culls went down by up to €10/hd but the top call still hit the €200/h mark in the case of a 107 kg batch, while 80-85 kg ewes were only €2.00/h kg were sold, which corresponds to 160-165 €/hd.


Almost 1,800 sheep were offered at yesterday’s auction. Lamb trade was better by €2-3/hour with the top calls selling 52kg at €150/hour and 48kg at €142/hour.

In the lighter class, 40-42 kg sold for €113-115/h, with 38 kg lambs selling for 132 kg, while 35 kg fetched around the €100/h mark.

Raising the ewes was easier – a result of the quality supply not being quite as strong as it used to be. The tops sold for €176-186/hour while lighter types fetched €150-155/hour.

Heavy culling sheep of 75-90 kg sell for €135-176/hour, 71-75 kg account for €80-100/hour.


The story here yesterday was of a smaller sale with 550 sheep on offer including a strong entry from shops getting a good deal.

The top call among the heavier butcher types saw seven lambs at 50.5 kg averaging €159/h, sixteen at 50 kg fetched €151/h.

The best lambs from 45 to 47 kg are sold for 120 to 137 €/hd. Underflesh lambs continue to turn up and have been difficult to sell.

Among the stores, the top calls were ten of 38kg at €112/hour, with 36kg selling at €105-108/hour, while ten lambs of 33.5kg cost an average of €95/hour.

The small entry of culling was 141 €/h for 95 kg.

https://www.independent.ie/business/farming/sheep/lamb-prices/factory-quotes-unchanged-but-mart-prices-move-up-42018350.html Factory quotations remain unchanged, but market prices are increasing

Fry Electronics Team

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