East coast farmers continue to lift WA lamb prices

Rob KellyCountryman
Camera IconCredit: Colin Poad/The West Australian

WA’s sheep market has remained relatively unchanged in the past week on the back of upbeat demand for lambs from Eastern States’ graziers.

Some of the public prices have been weaker, but in general the market remains between $8.70 to $9.

Feedlot prices are stable, too, with crossbred lambs sitting about $3.60 on-farm and $3.50 is being offered for Merinos.

However, the east coast market for WA lambs continues to be strong, as significant numbers flock across the border.

Goat prices had a mixed week.

In WA, prices were down to $7.55 with Beaufort River Meats.

On the east coast, there was some renewed interest from liveweight depots with Tilpa Goats in NSW increasing its price by 40¢ to $3.20/kg.

Hook prices on the east coast were weaker, though, and ended last week about $9.

The cattle market appears to have found a level of support.

Teys International increased its prices several times taking the company above $5.70 for grass-fed steers in Queensland, NSW and South Australia.

Cow and bull prices were also stronger and ended last week above $5.

Feedlot prices also bounced a bit with Black Angus steers bid at $3.80/kg liveweight in NSW while and British, Euro and Flatback-cross cattle were bid $3.45.

Internationally, the most significant factor is the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the United States’ processing capacity.

At this time last year, the US were processing more than 660,000 cattle per week, whereas last week they processed 425,000 cattle.

The impact of the reduced throughput means feeders are carrying stock for longer, and paying for it, which is decreasing their demand and flowing further back towards the farm gate.

Rob Kelly is the founder and managing director at LIVEstock Pricing, a free service with the latest sheep, cattle and goat price grids in one easy-to-use app.

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