Northern spring lamb prices up over €27/head on this time last year

Northern Ireland spring lamb prices are up over €27/head on this time last year, according to the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC).

Last week, prices for hoggets in the north averaged 5.99p/kg and spring lambs averaged 6.12p/kg.

These prices, when compared to this time last year, make for positive reading for Northern Ireland (NI) sheep farmers – despite the trade coming under pressure during that time.

According to the LMC, the deadweight hogget price is 137.9p/kg ahead of last year. That’s a difference of £30/head (€34.50/head) on a 22kg carcass.

Similary, spring lamb prices compared to last year also make for good reading. The deadweight spring lamb prices for last week was 116p/kg ahead of 2020.

That’s a difference of £24/head (€27.60/head) on a 21kg carcass.

The lamb and hogget trade has been strong throughout 2021 and remains well ahead of previous years.

According to the LMC, base quotes from the local processing plants for R3 grading hoggets and spring lambs this week were 575- 590p/kg, up to 22/23kg and 620- 630p/kg respectively.

Spring lamb supplies increasing

Similar to the south, the number of spring lambs coming forward for processing is on the rise, while hogget numbers tighten further.

The LMC said that last week there were very similar numbers of spring lambs and hoggets making up the NI deadweight price reported kill, with spring lambs accounting for 49.6% and hoggets accounting for the remaining 50.4%.

Looking at last week’s throughput in the North, lamb/hogget throughput totalled 6,545 head last week in NI processing plants – up 816 head from the previous week.

This takes the total lamb/hogget throughput during 2021 to date to 116,260 head, which is an increase of 13,847 head or (13.5%) when compared to the corresponding period in 2020, the LMC added.