Bendigo Sheep & Lamb Report

Lamb numbers nearly doubled on a week ago and quality improved, with some impressive extra heavy shorn lambs coming forward. The yarding still had a plentiful supply of lighter and plainer lambs, reflecting the dry conditions. Processor demand was ireggular, with one major exporter not operating and others only purchasing limited numbers amid reports they are booked with direct and forward contract sales. One of the major domestic buyers wasn’t active either. It resulted in a cheaper market across the heavy trade and export lambs of $3 to $12/head and more in places. Lighter weight lambs held their value thanks to
restocking orders and solid demand from processors for Muslim kill bag lambs. The unshorn full fleeced lambs still coming through the system are being discounted by buyers due to dry presentation and concerns of carcase quality under long skins.

Extra heavy shorn lambs sold to $239 amid restricted export bidding, with lambs over 30kg cwt averaging $206/head, at an estimated 620c/kg cwt. The bulk of the heavy and medium trade weight lambs returned estimated carcase prices from 640c to 670c, with occasional sales of the neatest domestic pens pushing over 700c/kg cwt on limited supplies. In dollar per head terms the main run of 24-26kg shorn lambs sold from $160 to $177 to average $170, while the category under this at 22-24kg averaged approximately $155/head. There were many light lambs sold to processors, making from $125 to $140/head. There were still some very strong sales of store lambs to restockers despite the extremely hot weather. The better lines of shorn lambs, weighing 12-16kg, made from $108 to $122 to average $113/head to the paddock. Smaller store lambs sold from $40 to $80/head. Many of the lighter weight lambs still trended above 700c/kg cwt.

A modest increase in sheep numbers to 6,500 head. All weights and grades were represented, from heavy crossbred ewes down to very light Merinos. Like lambs, processor demand for heavy mutton was selective, pulling some sales back by $4 to $9/head compared to a week ago. Buyer demand for trade weight and light mutton was more robust to be firm to dearer in places. The better quality processing sheep sold were estimated to make from 370c to 410c/kg cwt. Heavy Merino wethers in a big skin topped at $148, as crossbred and Merino ewes reached $136/head. The bulk of sheep sold from $80 to $115/head.
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Wagga Cattle Report

A significant lift in numbers impacted on price results. In a plainer offering cattle prices decreased, as the hot conditions continue to put supply pressure on the market. The bulk of the yearlings offered were secondary cattle however, some trade and heavy cattle were caught up in the cheaper trend. The few restockers that did operate had to battle against a boat order that helped keep a solid floor in one particular weight category.

Vealers numbers were limited and competition was steady, with well finished types selling from 245c to 265/kg. Trade heifer quality deteriorated noticeably and this was reflected in the cheaper trend of 18c/kg. Heifers suitable for the trade sold from 230c to 272c/kg Trade steers were few and competition was steady to average 279c/kg. Light weight weaner steers returning to the paddock sold from 216c to 310c, with the heifer portion averaging 227c/kg. The feeder steer and heifer market sold to erratic bidding, with the strongest competition from northern feedlots and a boat order. Feeder steers generally varied from 234c to 308c/kg. Feeder heifers weighing 330-400kg were keenly sought, at times making from 220c to 274c/kg.

Bidding for heavy grown steers was weaker, with processors shedding 11c on average off last week’s price to average 259c/kg. The limited supply of bullocks gained 9c, making from 240c to 264c/kg. The cow market sold to solid competition over all categories. Heavy cows topped at 226c to average 210c/kg. The D3 and D2 medium weight lines sold from 155c to 204c/kg. Store cows were well supplied, making from 145c to 200c/kg.
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Pakenham Cattle Report

There were approximately 1,300 export and 600 young cattle penned, representing an increase of 1,070 head week-on-week. The usual buying group was present and operating in a cheaper market. Quality was very mixed with a large proportion of the heavy cattle lacking finish, while vealers were again well supplied and varied in quality. Trade cattle sold mostly 5c to 15c cheaper, with secondary young cattle back up to 20c, while the heavy feeder steers held their own. Grown steers and bullocks eased 2c to 9c/kg. Heavy weight grown heifers dropped 13c/kg. Heavy manufacturing steers came off 14c/kg. Cows were mostly 5c to 10c/kg cheaper. Heavy bulls improved slightly.

Better quality vealers sold from 243c to 295c/kg. Yearling trade steers made between 262c and 290c/kg. Yearling heifers to the trade sold between 230c and 290c/kg.

Grown steers made from 252c to 280c/kg. Bullocks sold from 260c to 283c/kg. Heavy heifers made between 223c and 252c/kg. Heavy Friesian manufacturing steers sold between 200c and 216c, with the crossbred portion between 205c and 274c/kg. Most light and medium weight cows made from 150c to 207c/kg. Heavy weight cows sold mostly from 178c to 227c after a top of 236c/kg. Heavy bulls made between 212c and 261c/kg.
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