Kill stats give lie to fac­tory com­plaints

Irish Independent - Farming - - SHEEP RINGSIDE -

IF you were to be­lieve what you hear from some pro­ces­sors, the trade is “not al­to­gether great” right now.

But while all farm rep­re­sen­ta­tives would con­cede that some spring lamb and hoggets be­ing pre­sented are “scrappy”, with too lit­tle cover, there are those on the fac­tory side who ap­pear to be over-play­ing this line.

They may have iden­ti­fied it as the is­sue with the great­est po­ten­tial to rein in prices at present.

I’m not buy­ing it, and nei­ther are the sheep farm­ers I spoke to over the week­end, be­cause the fig­ures don’t lie.

Bord Bia fig­ures up to the end of April show the na­tional sheep kill is 856,542, which is up 2pc or 16,804 on the same pe­riod for 2017.

At the same time quoted prices for hogget are cur­rently run­ning from €1.20-1.50/kg ahead of last year, with spring lamb also up €1.10/kg ahead of 2017’s price.

The re­al­ity is that de­spite the dif­fi­cul­ties the spring of 2018 threw up, both farm­ers and fac­to­ries are get­ting through the num­bers.

Hence, yes­ter­day morn­ing quotes for spring lamb re­mained were gen­er­ally un­changed at last week’s lev­els, but Kil­dare Chilling ac­tu­ally put up its quote by 10c/kg to a mar­ket-lead­ing €7.00/kg +10c/kg bonus.

Kil­dare also lead the way on hogget prices with their quote of €6.20/kg plus 10c/kg bonus. Fol­low­ing up smartly on the spring lamb side are Moy­val­ley Meats and Kepak Ath­league, both of whom leave their €7.00/kg quote from last week un­changed.

Also un­changed for lamb are the two ICMs on €6.80+10c/kg bonus, and Dawn Bal­ly­hau­nis, who re­main on a straight €6.80/ kg.

There is far less di­vi­sion on the hogget side as those be­low Kil­dare Chilling’s €6.20+bonuses get all their ducks in a row on a base of €6.00/kg, with the two ICMs also adding their 10c/kg qual­ity pay­ment to the mix.

Of­fi­cial quotes for ewes see all those with an in­ter­est in that side of the busi­ness com­ing ex­actly into line at €3.00/kg, with Kil­dare pos­si­bly edg­ing it with their 10c/kg bonus. How­ever, Kil­dare shaved 30c/kg off their quote for cull ewes com­pared to last week.

On the ground both IFA and ICSA re­ported that the gen­eral run of hogget prices is from €6.40-6.50/kg, with IFA’s Sean Den­nehy claim­ing €6.60/kg is pos­si­ble.

John Brooks reck­oned €7.00/kg was where the price for spring lamb from farm to fac­tory was at.

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