Trade Talk - Ross Whitcombe BSc (Hons) MRICS FAAV, Cooper & Tanner LLP, Frome Livestock Market
24th August 2020
Sell live to thrive seems to be the motto of the moment, with all sectors of the livestock market benefiting from both strong prices and large numbers, putting much needed confidence and, more importantly, cash back into the industry.
At Frome Livestock Market in the last month, we have had plenty of prices to shout about with dairy cows selling for over £2,000, cross bred cows achieving £1,940, store cattle achieving over £1,400, breeding ewes to £149, fat lambs to £2.49 pence per kilo and store lambs to £90.
The sheep trade this summer has simply been unprecedented for both breeding ewes and fat lambs. Fat lamb averages have stayed well above £2.00 per kilo, with plenty of lambs coming through the system and many producers commenting how well the lambs have grown and finished this season. Many feared that once the most recent religious festival ‘Eid ul-Adha’ had ended, the sheep trade may have crashed however three weeks on, the lamb trade appears to be holding well above the £2 per kilo and the cull ewes appear to have gone dearer.
The strong lamb and cull ewe prices have in turn given confidence for farmers to go and buy breeding ewes, which has increased demand, resulting in higher prices being achieved with ewes appearing to be on average £15 - £25 a piece dearer on the year. Those producers who have kept the ewe lambs around, have been rewarded for their commitment over the winter, giving a good outlook for this year’s ewe lambs sales.
Without the markets operating this spring and summer the picture would not be as rosy for the livestock industry!! If we all continue to follow the measures put in place it stands us in good stead to continue operating and achieving those exceptional prices.