IFA National Sheep Committee Chairman James Murphy said the backlog of lambs built up over the Christmas as a result of the severe weather has now moved on and lamb finishers are finding it easier to get €5.00/kg for lamb.
James Murphy said all the indications are that lamb numbers will continue to be very tight into the New Year and for the remainder of the spring. For 2011, James Murphy said Bord Bia is forecasting a reduction in sheep slaughterings of a further 70,000 head at the meat plants. This comes on top of a reduction of 300,000 head in 2010.
In addition, the IFA sheep farmers’ leader said lamb numbers across Europe will remain very tight for 2011 with the EU Commission forecasting a 3% drop in production for the 2010 – 2015 period. “Slaughterings in both the UK market and the French market are projected to fall by another 1% in 2010/2011. This will increase the import requirement in France by another 4%, up to 120,000t.”