Wave of highs and lows tipped for State’s lamb prices
A common question is recurring across the nation’s saleyards: are the current strong lamb prices sustainable?
With buoyant sales at the Muchea Livestock Centre and Katanning Regional Saleyards aligning WA lamb prices with the Eastern States, producers are relishing the climbing value.
And Mecardo market analyst Matt Dalgleish is adamant farmers will keep riding lamb’s topsy-turvy wave of success.
“Over the next four to five years, there will be reasonably high prices,” he said.
“There will be highs and lows through the seasons, but they are going to remain around these high levels.
“From a sustainability point-of-view, we are going to continue to see really strong prices for lamb prices going forward.”
Mr Dalgleish added during the upcoming spring, “when the flush of lambs comes on”, he expected seasonal decline in lamb prices.
The Eastern States Trade Lamb Indicator reached 802¢/kg carcase weight last last month to rise above 800¢/kg cwt for the first time this year.
Mr Dalgleish said Mecardo modelling had forecast the ESTLI to hike up to 940¢/kg cwt this season, with the indicator poised to further rally the WA price.
Despite the prediction, lamb has not yet reached the record set last year when it was trading at 884¢/kg cwt.
While lamb continues to trend upwards, Mr Dalgleish said mutton was already hovering around historic highs after attracting 597¢/kg cwt last week.
“Adjusting for inflation, we have seen mutton prices higher than what they are at now only twice — in 1973 (near $6) and also post-World War II, when it was around $9,” he said.
“Modelling we’ve done on mutton prices shows that there is potential for it to reach about $6 nationally.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if it gets to the $6.40 level in the depths of winter.”
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