Trade Talk - Robert Addison FRICS FLAA, Managing Director, Hexham and Northern Marts

9th August 2021

I am writing this with the Olympic competition in full swing with gold, silver and bronze medals being the just rewards for all the endeavours of the worthy recipients.

On a slightly smaller scale we have just held our Summer Young Handlers show for Prime sheep at our Hexham and Scots Gap centres the prizes are rosettes and chocolate, however they are equally well received and deserved.

Our goals are on a longer term, hopefully the youngsters will enjoy their day at the mart after missing out last year.

We hope that they appreciate the pre-sale preparation, the show, the sale, the breakfast and the dinner and that the day leaves them with a positive view towards the live auction process, every year the auctioneers , yard staff and primestock buyers go out of their way to support the next generation of farmers and stockpersons.

The prices have been slightly down on the week with an SQQ averaging round the 2.40p/kg mark however a gross price of £107.26 is up £ 11.00 on the year and reflects a positive vibe within the sheep sector.

Our thoughts now turn to Breeding sheep with our first sale tomorrow, Friday, When I was a youngster in the market David Thomlinson the senior auctioneer always said 2 prime lambs should equate to the price of a shearling if this formula is true (it is generally not far from the mark) we will hopefully have a good start to the Autumn sales indeed i have seen some excellent breeding sheep sales online, country wide.

In the cast ewe sector we have held some excellent sales with prices being the highest in living memory, our store lamb sales have also started off well with a combination of excellent prime lamb prices and a flush of grass has given rise to some strong demand ringside.

Cattle wise this time of year is quiet numbers are traditionally low, prices have been exceptional as primestock finishers have competed to replenish their numbers on the back of some excellent primestock returns, despite this worryingly we are still seeing the number of suckler cows reducing in the North.