Lamb trade “takes off” as prices rise 30-40c/kg in just a week

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The quality bonus, worth 10-20c/kg, only adds to the shine for Irish lamb producers, writes Martin Ryan.

It is sunshine all the way under blue skies for the lamb trade as the price ‘take off’ continues to deliver for producers supplying the factories for this week.

The quoted prices have increased by 30-40c/kg to range 740-750c/kg, with the quality bonus, worth 10-20c/kg, only adding to the shine.

It is festival celebration season, and there isn’t a cloud in the sky over the trade for the hogget lambs, with demand for supplies at the factories being replicated by the record prices being paid at the live sales at the marts.

Suppliers to the factories are reporting keen interest in numbers as demand to supply advance orders for the Muslim religious festival, Ramadan, ramps up to be followed by Easter at the end of March.

Producers are reporting that 760-780c/kg is being paid for the hogget lambs for this week, with the larger lots of well-finished hogget lambs capable of making up to 790-800c/kg presently.

The early Easter this year means that new season lamb will be almost non-existent, and reliance on the hogget lambs to supply the market should sustain the price over the coming weeks.

Martin Ryan | Irish Examiner

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