Quotes down by up to 10c/kg as im­ports hit home

Irish Independent - Farming - - SHEEP RINGSIDE -

THE STORY in the trade over the last week has been one of fac­tory price pulls while the store trade holds very firm at the marts.

The ICM group dropped its quote for lamb yes­ter­day morn­ing by 10c/kg to €4.40/ kg+ qual­ity as­sur­ance (QA) of 10c/kg.

Kil­dare Chilling also shaved 10c/kg off their base to slip in along­side Moy­val­ley Meats on €4.50/kg, al­though their 10c/ kg QA does give them an edge. Edg­ing ahead of Kil­dare this week are Kepak Ath­league who hold their quote from last week of €4.60+5c/kg QA steady. Dawn Bal­ly­hau­nis didn’t have a quote avail­able yes­ter­day morn­ing.

Num­bers are the is­sue with sev­eral fac­to­ries re­ported as hav­ing put farm­ers with sheep to kill off by three to four days last week, thus in­sur­ing a carry over into this week.

Fig­ures from Bord Bia show that cu­mu­la­tive fig­ures for the year to Septem­ber 22 show fac­tory through­put at the ex­port plants is up 10pc at 195,500 on the same pe­riod last year.

CSO fig­ures show that to­tal Ir­ish sheep meat ex­ports for the pe­riod Jan­uary to July are up 12pc and 11pc in value and vol­ume. For the first seven months of 2017, Ire­land ex­ported 29,000 tonnes of sheep meat, equiv­a­lent to €167m in trade.

But right now those ex­tra num­bers are not trans­lat­ing into prof­its at the fac­tory gate for the farm­ers.

This point was taken up by ICSA’s John Brooks who crit­i­cised the fac­to­ries for con­tin­u­ing to im­port sheep from North­ern Ire­land for slaugh­ter.

“It’s a de­lib­er­ate ploy to fur­ther un­der­mine farmer con­fi­dence by forc­ing prices lower,” he said.

The North­ern Ire­land Live­stock and Meat Com­mis­sion re­ported that 7,209 lambs were ex­ported south in the first week of Oc­to­ber along with 1,603 ewes and rams.

Im­ports from the North play an im­por­tant role in the north­ern sheep econ­omy as well as in the cal­cu­la­tions of South­ern plants, cal­cu­la­tions that have to take ac­count of ster­ling, which yes­ter­day morn­ing stood at 89p to the euro.

In France, trade has re­mained un­changed from pre­vi­ous weeks where trade and con­sump­tion are quite weak. The cur­rent spell of mild weather is cur­tail­ing de­mand. Grade 1 lambs are trad­ing be­tween €4.50-€4.70/ kg, and grade 2s are trad­ing at a price be­tween €4.20-€4.30/ kg. There are no pro­mo­tions run­ning in re­tail­ers this week on lamb, as re­tail­ers are push­ing mainly pork and beef.

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