Wagga sheep and lamb market, January 14 2021

LOOKING BACK: A file image of lamb buyer Brendan Halden at the Wagga sheep and lamb market. Picture: Emma Hillier
LOOKING BACK: A file image of lamb buyer Brendan Halden at the Wagga sheep and lamb market. Picture: Emma Hillier

VENDORS sold 34,650 sheep and lambs at the Wagga market on Thursday.

According to Meat and Livestock Australia's National Livestock Reporting Service lamb supplies declined moderately.

The quality of the yarding was fair to very good most of the better finished lambs were grain assisted. Heavy lamb supplies increased, with more lambs weighing above 30kg carcase weight.

Shorn trade lambs were well supplied, and buyers paid premium prices for the top pens. There were more restocking orders in play which pushed prices higher.

The usual field of buyers were in attendance and a bigger group of exporters operated fully. Major domestic processors were the market drivers over medium and heavy classes of trade lambs however, at cheaper prices of $8 to $14/head.

Well shaped 3 score 21 to 24kg shorn lambs made from $190 to $215/head. Carcase weight prices averaged 850c/kg cwt. Merino trade lambs sold from $166 to $186/head.

There was a very mixed selection of lambs to suit restockers. The general run of lambs carrying some weight and frame sold from $157 to $178/head.

A bigger group of export buyers were at the rail and all companies operated. Lambs 24 to 26kg enjoyed some domestic competition selling from $206 to $222/head. Lambs weighing 26 to 30kg met solid competition making from $222 to $235/head to average 816c/kg cwt.

The highlight of the sale was shorn lambs weighing more than 30kg carcase weight. These lambs sold from $232 to $273/head. It was a mixed yarding of sheep and not all buyers operated.

Heavy ewes sold to strong demand from a northern buyer prepared to push price. Heavy crossbred ewes sold up $286/head to average 611c/kg cwt. Heavy Merino wethers sold at $210 to $228/head. Trade sheep were in short supply averaging 581c/kg cwt.