Merino lamb and hogget prices rise up

Rob KellyCountryman

Merino lambs and hogget prices ticked higher last week, while mutton and cross-bred lambs remained stable.

There are now multiple buyers at $6.80 over the hook for cross-bred lambs.

At the same time, feedlots are paying around $3.20/kg liveweight.

Comparing the two numbers indicates that if you are not hitting the middle of the grid and achieving $6.80 then you should be looking at feedlots to avoid big penalties on stock that’s not suitable to process.

The WA mutton market is trading at $4.80, leaving it at more than a $1 discount to the east coast.

The discount is due to the low stock numbers on the east coast, as a result of terrible conditions in many areas.

Spot and forward lamb markets on the east coast were stable the last week but the summer forward contracts are filling up.

In Victoria and South Australia, spot lamb prices are trading at $7.60.

Forward prices were available for about $8 during late December and early January, however, now they’re mostly sitting around $7.60 for late January with earlier spaces booking up quite quickly.

Lamb prices in NSW are similar, but mutton and hogget prices are higher on account of the season.

Thomas Foods International increased its mutton and hogget bids in NSW by 40¢ to $6.20/kg this week.

The goat market on the other hand has been weaker over the last week. Victorian goat prices moved lower by 20¢ to $9 to be aligned with South Australia.

In Queensland and NSW, we’ve also seen the market under pressure with prices coming off slightly to $9.50 over the hooks.

Cattle markets were generally 10¢ firmer over the last week.

Queensland export orders remain around $3.20 for steers, while Northern Territory export orders are slightly higher at $3.35.

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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