Lamb supply eased to 13,600 head, down nearly 6,000 head. The most noticeable change was in quality. The yarding this week
was much plainer, with weight and fat cover declining due to the season. Despite the lack of quality, buyers continued to push
the sale as they were after numbers. Most lambs were $5 to $10 dearer, with some trade weights gaining up to $20/head more.
Premiums were paid for the lead run of lambs that displayed the best finish. For the first time at Bendigo, there were runs of
medium and heavy trade weight crossbreeds averaging greater than 800c/kg cwt. There was also stronger competition for stock
with weight and reasonable fat cover across the Merino lamb run and Dorpers, which sold above $200/head for the first time.
There was strong competition for heavy hoggets, creating much dearer results in this section.
The export lamb market remained firm at $237 to a market top of $265/head for pens weighing over 30kg. The strongest
bidding was seen across the medium and heavy lambs, up to about 28kg. The main run of crossbreds, in the 26-30kg category,
sold from $208 to $258/head to average an estimated 790c to 810c/kg. Prices strengthened on the better quality trade weights,
with the pick of the 22-24kg weight range crossbreds selling to $221/head and averaging an estimated 810c/kg cwt. Merino
lambs sold to $188/head, with buyers favouring trade weight pens that had better fat cover. The lighter weights and secondary
lambs under 20kg varied more in price, based on quality. Most sales received from $96 to $145/head with a big variance in
Sheep numbers lifted to 7,700 head, as more old ewes were sold in the midst of a tightening season. Prices eased on the
heaviest mutton as several of exports were absent. Prices for the main lines of leaner trade weight sheep improved on a carcase
basis, receiving an estimated 520c to 540c/kg cwt. A small pen of very large crossbred wethers topped at $220/head. Extra
heavy, crossbred ewes received from $162 to $200/head. Heavy Merinos made from $130 to $188/head. The competition for
hogget saw prices rise to reach $216/head.