Farm Tender

New season Lambs go prime time and Heavy Sheep prices surge at Bendigo

Yarding - 26,500 (+2000).
Lambs - 19,500 (+2500)
Sheep - 7000 (-500).

Bigger yarding of lambs, dominated by new season crossbreds which accounted for around 15,500 head. Alongside these was 2,000 young merino and a similar number of old season lambs. Fresh conditioned heavy young lambs continue to roll in, with the bulk weighing from 24 to 30kg cwt. Export buyers led a strong market, with all the major domestic orders also active. Price results were firm to $2 to $3/head better than a week ago. With some big weights coming through, around 24 pens of young lambs sold above $200 to a top of $230/head. Extra heavy old season lambs reached $240/head.

The lead pens of extra heavy young lambs $206 to a top of $230/head. There was a lot of lambs in the 26 to 30kg cwt range which made from $180 to $220 to record averages in the high $190/head prices. Heavy trade lambs, 24 to 26kg sold from $170 to $198 to average around $180/head. The pick of the 22 to 24kg young lambs sold from $162 to $177/head. Lighter processing lambs made mostly from $135to $155/head. Carcase prices have tightened up, with heavy lambs now making similar returns to trade weights to make from 680c to 730c/kg for most. There is still some premiums of over 740c/kg evident for select pens of domestic lambs. The unshorn Merino lambs were mostly in the lighter weight ranges at $129 to $155/head. Export buyers were keen for any quality old season lambs with weight, paying to $240/head.Store buyers were present from Ballarat, Horsham, Echuca and the local Bendigo area. Ballarat agents paid to $180 for trade weight lambs to shear, with most smaller lambs to the paddock from $130 to $145/head in a stronger result.

Little change to sheep numbers at 7,000 head. Tremendous amount of weight in both the crossbred and Merino sections thanks to the good season. Export competition was keener, particularly from one northern based processor. Prices for heavy sheep surged by $10 to $30 to lift carcases estimates back over 500c/kg. One exceptionally heavy pen of Dorset ewes topped at $230/head. Most heavy crossbred ewes $170 to $220; heavy Merino ewes $167 to $201; heavy Merino wethers $160 to $200/head


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