Beyond the Saleyards - Prices fatten on the sheep’s back

Rob KellyCountryman

WA markets gained some support during the last week, with Beaufort River Meats boosting its lamb prices to match the top bid of 720¢ for new-season lambs.

In addition to this, V&V Walsh released its guaranteed minimum forward schedules, starting with an April price of 760¢ and working up to 820¢ in July for crossbred and grain-assisted Merino lambs.

Restockers have also increased their bids following the rain, with some now bidding 340¢ on farm.

On the east coast, lamb prices were stable, but hogget and mutton prices jumped sharply.

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Mutton is now near 700¢/kg HSCW and hoggets are above 700¢.

Crossbred lambs eased a touch but are still around 800¢, and Merinos are sitting at a 20¢ discount.

The wool market closed the week up 4¢ to 1310¢/kg with 9.3 per cent passed in.

Goat markets were flat. There has been a lot of nanny goats bought on the east coast at 400¢ or better.

With a kidding rate of well above two a year, there is going to be a big flood of goats in the medium term, which makes the 1000¢/kg HSCW price hard to see as sustainable long term.

The east coast cattle markets continued to show signs of weakness, with Queensland and NSW processors and feedlots lowering prices by 5-10¢.

In WA, the market remains well bid around 450¢ for feeder steers. In general, however, the market is trading slightly higher than this.

Export markets were also active.

Northern markets continue to see prices in the 380-400¢ region for steers and 360¢ region for heifers. Cows are about 280¢.

Processor and feedlot market bids on Tuesday (¢/kg or $/head):

WA restockers: Angus/Murray Grey milk tooth feeder cattle-steers 450¢, heifers 420¢. Contact LIVEstock Pricing for details.

East coast processor prices: 100 day grain-fed (HGP free): steers 700¢, heifers 695¢. Grassfed: steers 695¢, heifers 690¢. Cows 600¢. Bulls 530¢.

QLD feedlots: Black Angus: 490¢, Black Angus British X: 480¢, Wagyu X Angus: 655¢

QLD export orders: Feeder steers 415¢, slaughter steers 380¢. Feeder bulls 380¢ heifers 360¢, cows 280¢

NSW feedlots (steers): Black Angus: 425c¢ British, Euro X, Flat Back: 465¢, XB 445¢

China export orders: Heifers (unjoined): Friesians $2100 Holstein (200+kgs, no blood tests) $1000-$1200. Red Angus $1300. Jersey unjoined heifers (200kg) $1300.

Full price grids and details are available in the LIVEstock Pricing app and at livestockpricing.com.au.

Rob Kelly is the Founder and Managing Director of LIVEstock Pricing, a free service with the latest sheep, cattle and goat price grids in one easy-to-use app.

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