IFA National Sheep Chairman John Lynskey has said there is a major onus on the lamb factories to act responsibility at this critical time for the lamb trade.
He said it is incredible that in the lead into Easter, some factories are telling farmers who have produced high quality spring lamb that that they don’t want the stock. He said farmers see this as a move to try to hit prices, when they should be reaching their peak levels.
John Lynskey said the factory quoted prices of €6.10/6.20 for spring lamb have been very disappointing to date. However, some factories paid up to €6.30/6.40/kg for spring lambs in the last week. In addition he said some deals have been done at much higher prices and butchers and wholesalers have paid €6.30/6.40/kg without any weight limits. He said farmers need to get spring lambs into at least €135 per head.
John Lynskey said with the high costs involved in Easter lamb, producers would need a price closer to €7.00/kg to leave a reasonable margin, particularly considering the heavier workload involved.
On hoggets he said the factories are paying €5.10 to €5.20/kg. Again he said this is disappointing at this time of year and well behind last year’s trade. Ewes are making from €3.00/3.20/kg.