The Sheep Deer and Cattle Report: North Island lamb prices lift with the rain at the saleyards and the works

The Sheep Deer and Cattle Report: North Island lamb prices lift with the rain at the saleyards and the works


The new month has seen big North Island lamb schedules rises as processing flows slow and rain encourages farmers to put more weight on remaining stock.

Alliance is offering minimum price contracts for its winter / spring supply, to encourage farmers to commit so that they can maintain customers for their chilled lamb business.

Saleyards in the previously dry Manawatu have been full of store lambs and buyers mainly from the Bay have competed strongly for stock with prices now averaging over $90 per head.

Most of the rams will have done the job and set the scene for the new season and managers will be planning the winter rotation to maintain ewe condition until closer to lambing.

The first sod was turned to mark the start of construction on the Central Plains Irrigation scheme in the south, while the Ruataniwha water contract deadline has been extended in the north by three months to allow more farmers to plan funding and sign.

Beef and Lamb NZ released it’s mid season update with positive news that farm profits are estimated to be up 35% on last year, and good prospects for lamb and beef should continue, subject to a steady exchange rate.

This is on the back of an average 18.3kg CWT lamb returning $100, Bulls 427c/kg, Steers 433c/kg,  and a lift in wool prices by 13%, all assuming a mid exchange rate of 81c US.


Wet weather cancelled the last north island wool sale and only half the rostered volumes will be offered at the following southern sale.

This lack of supply should help stimulate prices as little wool is in the pipeline and processors have looked to buy close to orders to minimize the risks of price volatility.


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Bull and steer schedules again moved upwards in the north as feed and strong local trade prices kept competition keen for stock.

The weaner calf sales have all but finished and attracted prices for heifers and steers about 4-6%c/kg LWT ahead of last year, and from reports weights were heavier as well.

A new weed control product has stimulated the growing of fodder beet as this brassicas yield and quality reignites interest in this plant for wintering animals at low cost per kg of DM.


With the lowest autumn schedule since 2007 now in its 9th week, deer farmers will soon be looking for some upward movement to match the marketers optimism for the new season.

Deer Industry NZ has announced a new understanding with the Korean Deer Breeders Association on the importing of velvet into that market which could lead to more product going directly there and progress free trade negotiations to lower tariff and excise duties.

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

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