Farm Tender

Suckers above 24kg hit averages of $10/kg at Bendigo

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Yarding - 26,000 (-5000)
Lambs - 18,000 (-2000)
Sheep - 8000 (-3000)

Lamb supply reduced to 18,000 head, 2,000 less than a week ago. Young unshorn lambs are now easily dominating numbers, with old lamb supply down to tail-end lots. All the regular export and domestic buyers attended, and while the market for new season lambs did open softer it quickly gained momentum to end-up averaging firm to dearer. With limited runs of well finished heavy young lambs available, all the key categories above 24kg cwt hit averages of 1000c/kg cwt. Price results were mixed for old season lambs, mostly reflecting quality and number in a pen. Sheep were cheaper.

Only a few pens of young lambs had enough weight to sell above $300, reaching a top of $312/head for an estimated 29kg cwt. The price average for the best heavy 26kg to 30kg cwt lambs was $297/head at an estimated 1010c/kg cwt. Bidding was consistent at $250 to $280/head for the fat score 3 and 4 heavy trade lambs, 24kg to 26kg cwt, which also averaged an estimated 1000c/kg cwt. There was a wider selection of young lambs in the 20kg to 23kg cwt range, and these varied from $185 to $245/head or 850c to 1000c/kg cwt plus
depending on breed quality and finish - the higher carcass rates generally paid for stock showing more carcass fat cover and hardness.

Ballarat restockers paid from $180 to $225/head for leaner trade lambs to shear in a slightly dearer result. The supply of genuine store lambs in the 14kg to 18kg cwt range was again low, with most of these smaller crossbred lambs to the paddock from $150 to $178/head.

Export weight old lambs sold to a top of $280 and were cheaper, but most sold in pen-lots of less than 20/head. Any better quality shorn heavy trade weight lambs were dearer at over 900c/kg cwt. Very secondary trade lambs lacking finish and in rough skins were cheaper.

The sheep yarding of 8,000 head was mostly made up of Merino and Crossbred ewes. Buyers showed less enthusiasm for mutton as numbers build, heavy sheep another $5 to $20/head easier to slip below 600c/kg cwt. Heavy ewes mostly $180 to $200, with just odd sales of big crossbreds to $222/head. Neater trade weight sheep $130 to $175/head at an estimated cost of 600c to 625c/kg cwt. Some pens of young Merino wethers still sold strongly.