Clean cattle are a still a good trade at 375-380p and numbers remain relatively plentiful given the reported easing in the retail trade for red meat. Veganuary certainly does none of us any favours! Medium term though once everyone gets bored of their cauliflower steaks and baked potatoes, numbers of forward cattle are tighter and at this stage there is unlikely to be an oversupply of cattle as the days draw out.
Cow quality is very variable and we are probably starting to see the impact of poorer quality forage on grades with higher percentage of P1 cattle than we saw last season. We anticipate cow price to remain positive with spring suckler herds, certainly in the borders reporting good PD-ing sessions and low numbers of culls. More needed, prompt pick up assured.
The hogget trade for 2018 has kicked off in a positive fashion with lambs keenly competed for, particularly those with a bit of weight and cover behind them. Bases prices are varying between 390 and 400p/kg which is welcome relief for everyone sitting with a lot of mouths.
There are a lot of light lambs coming forward. If you have a good number of them, please consider pumping some feeding into these and take them to standard weights. If you want to send light weight lambs, sub 36kg please let us know and don’t mix them in without first telling your fieldsman. We have orders for them, but it is imperative that the abattoirs know that they are coming.
Sensibly bought Blackface store lambs are leaving good profits for those brave enough to take the plunge back in September. It is difficult to know whether volumes are going to stay tight for long or are there a lot of sheep waiting in the wings. The general consensus in the office would be to cash the bigger end now and lock in some margin as there’s no guarantee the trade will keep rising.
More standard weight hogget’s wanted.
Organic cattle are much the same as last month, with supply and demand reasonably balanced. Base prices to 450p. The phone has been red hot with organic lambs in huge demand, the trade has moved to 430p and if numbers remain tight then it could go further. More organic lambs urgently needed.