Sheep prices steady as demand rises

Gavin BignellCountryman

After steady gains last week, the lamb market has stabilised, with the top price for crossbred and Merino lambs being $7 and $6.40 respectively.

Feedlot demand continues to grow, with Kingston Rest Feedlot increasing its live weight price for crossbred lambs to $3.20.

Demand for mutton and hoggets is strong as Hillside Meat Processors increased its bid by 80¢ to $6.

The average price for mutton was also up 50¢ for the week.

The east coast market remained relatively unchanged, with crossbred lambs bringing between $7.20 and $7.50.

We are seeing buyers like Kenny’s Creek and Smith’s Tallangatta Meat Processors being more active in the market as they look to cover their position over the Christmas and new year period, particularly as a number of saleyards will not be operating.

The goat market remained mostly stable with the exception of a drop in prices for lightweight goats in WA and increases for rangeland goats in NSW.

The cattle market on the east coast was lower across the board, with most buyers reducing bids by about 10¢/kg.

The continued dry forced more cattle onto the market, with feedlots taking advantage and covering their current requirements.

Similarly, a lot of east coast processors have their requirements covered to the end of the year.

There are several processors that have published that they will shut down over the Christmas and new year period, which could also drive down demand in the immediate term.

The demand for live export cattle out of Queensland continues to be strong, with steers and heifers bringing $3.10 and $2.65 respectively.

Other points of interest:

— Audio reports are now available in the LIVEstock Pricing app so there is no need to wait by the radio or go online the next day.

— Sign up now for the LIVEstock Pricing Daily Market Updates via the markets page on our website.

Gavin Bignell is the operations manager 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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