There was a modest lift in lamb numbers to 24,100 head, while sheep numbers halved as the cull, due to the dry season, starts to slow. Quality in the lamb run was better than a week ago, with more consistent finish and weight evident across the young unshorn lambs. All the regular buyers operated and showed reasonable demand for numbers, which underpinned a strong market which gained pace as the sale progressed. Prices were mostly $4 to $10/head dearer, with the heaviest and lighter weight domestic lambs recording the best gains. There wasn't a lot of price change over the medium trade weight lambs. A small pen of heavy shorn lambs topped the sale at $243/head.
The heaviest pens of young lambs weighing over 27kg cwt sold from $215 to a top of $233/head. The main run of good crossbred young lambs in the 22-24kg cwt bracket made from $163 to $190 to average $177/head. Specialist restockers from Ballarat did apply some buying pressure in the 18-21kg cwt range of lambs against processors, with most sales improving to between $138 to $166/head and it was this style of lamb which showed the most dollar per head improvement of the sale. On a carcass basis most lambs to processors consistently averaged from 710c to 750c/kg cwt. The selection of old season lambs continues to dwindle, although any recently shorn pens that displayed good carcass quality were dearer.
Sheep supplies tightened amid strong demand from processors which led to significant price gains of $10 to $20/head for mutton. There was some big lines of extra heavy crossbred ewes which sold to $162, while the heavy Merino wethers reached $160/head. Mutton tracked comfortably above 400c, with the good lines of medium weight Merinos estimated at around 450c/kg cwt.Back