Lamb numbers dropped away again as producers react to the cheaper rates on offer. It was a scrappy winter's yarding, with just a few good lines of lambs available amid plainer types. The buying ranks remain affected by Covid-19 abattoir closures in Victoria and winter slowdowns at others, and at least five companies weren't operating. A positive was the return of a supermarket buyer, and the few ideally weighted domestic lambs in short skins were dearer. But the rest of the yarding, including export lambs, were only similar to even cheaper than a week ago. Agents did pass-in one lead run of extra heavy lambs off grain.
Heavy export lambs over 30kg cwt from $180 to a top of $200/head once. Most medium and heavy trade lambs fluctuated from $155 to$180/head. Small pen lots of mixed lambs were heavily discounted at times. A few pens of new season young lambs sold to $181/head and were among the stronger sales at 700c to 770c/kg cwt for neat trades. But the bulk of the yarding to processors tracked under 680c, with the heaviest exports lambs below 600c/kg cwt. Trade weight Merino lambs with good cover from $158 to $166/head to be trending around 600c/kg cwt.
The sheep market also fluctuated around quality and weight. Extra heavy crossbred ewes sold at cheaper rates from $156 to $188/head.Merino wethers offered processors the biggest runs of better quality, and sold from $155 to $190/head for an average of around 580c/kg cwt. Merino ewes with weight and condition made from $145 to $195/head.