IFA National Sheep Committee Chairman John Lynskey said the factories are offering from €4.70 to €4.90/kg for lambs this week. He said that in some parts of the country supplies are tight and factories are anxious for lambs. He said carcase weights are up to 22kgs.
John Lynskey said farmers are getting very annoyed and angry at the way they feel imported lambs from Northern Ireland are being used by the factories to cut prices to local suppliers. He said the factories are taking advantage and using the weakness of sterling to import increasing volumes of Northern lambs while at the same time pushing back local suppliers and offering lower prices.
He said this makes no market sense to farmers and what they see is increasing volumes of imported lamb in the factories. It was reported that between 9,000 and 10,000 lambs per week from Northern Ireland are being imported.
The IFA Sheep Chairman said Brexit and the sterling exchange rate, along with Northern lamb imports, are now been used by the factories as the stick to beat the lamb price at farm level. He said this is totally unacceptable to farmers and eroding confidence at a critical time in the sheep year, when producers are making their plans for the breeding season.