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Cyclone Olwyn Upsets Australian Lamb Markets

23 March 2015

AUSTRALIA – Throughput fell dramatically across many Australian lamb sale-yards last week, as widespread rain hampered trade.

Marketing activity was particularly restrained in Western Australia, where the storm was concentrated along the coast.

This led to lamb sales halving in the territory, with Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) reporting only 15,000 head sold between Muchea and Katanning.

Rainfall was less of an issue last week than the week before, however, and mainly concentrated to the coast, the Top End of the Northern Territory, Tasmania and Victoria. South Australia remained dry,the Australian Bureau of Meteorology said.

Lambs were lighter, as well as being smaller in number, according to MLA analysts.

Summarising the Western Australia results, they added: “Very light store lambs, both Merino and crossbred were available in large numbers with light crossbred and most Merino drafts between $10 and $75/head.

“Lighter lambs suitable for the processor, air freight markets and feeders sold between $66 and $10 /head. Trade lambs sold between $85 and $114/head.”

In New South Wales, Dubbo’s yardings fell 11 per cent while Tamworth added 22 per cent.

Victoria and South Australia bucked the trend. A 16 per cent lift was confirmed for Victoria, totalling 56,026 throughput. However, all markets registered a decline expect Bendigo.

Despite seeing one of the most dramatic falls in trade, South Australia reported eight per cent more sales week on week. The biggest drop was at Naracoorte, where numbers plummeted to 2,673 head, down 49 per cent.

TheSheepSite News Desk

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