Irish Farmers' Association (IFA) national sheep chairman Sean Dennehy has said the lamb trade remains buoyant with factories paying top prices of €6.50 for top quality hoggets, up to 23kg.
Mr Dennehy said there are a few more spring lambs out this week, with factories paying €7.00/kg and some individual and group deals a little better.
Carcase weights are varying from 20.5 to 21kg, the IFA reports. The ewe trade is generally at €3.00/kg, with some top prices up to €3.30/kg. Carcase weights on ewes are varying from 40kg to tops of 45kg.
Mr Dennehy said moves by some meat plants to try and quote less for spring lambs made no sense when some of the same factories were prepared to pay €6.50/kg for hoggets. He said in effect they were willing to pay as much for hoggets as they were prepared to quote for spring lambs.
He said in the UK during the week ending May 12, the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) reported the GB deadweight SQQ for hoggets continuing to move upwards (+9p), to 578.5p/kg. The quote currently stands at 165.6p above year earlier levels, equivalent to €6.92/kg including VAT.
The IFA sheep farmers’ leader said the deadweight SQQ for new season lamb followed a similar trend (+9.6p), to 610.5p/kg, which is equivalent to €7.31 including VAT. The AHDB reported that, with prices on the global market still trending high, lamb prices in the UK have the potential to continue to be well above historic normal levels over the next few months.