For parts of the south east, another significant dose of wet weather is either on the ground or on its way. The season has already been very kind to the new season lamb crop with reports from both north and south that the condition of stock is excellent, but needing a few days of sun in southern areas. Competition remained strong this week with the market firming across categories.

The Eastern States Trade Lamb Indicator (ESTLI) gained 23¢ to end the week at 750¢/kg cwt. In the West the Western Australian Trade Lamb Indicator edged just 3¢ higher to 541¢/kg cwt. Restockers continued to rebound with the National Indicator gaining 140¢ to 780¢/kg.

Merino and Light lambs also ended the week dearer, gaining 20¢ and 35¢ respectively. Heavy lambs attracted an extra 33¢ in Victoria at 754¢/kg cwt and a more muted 5¢ to 760¢/kg cwt in NSW. Mutton was pulled higher in the stronger lamb market gaining 14¢ to 536¢/kg cwt.

Last week marked the second highest week of lamb slaughter this year. In the east 363,167 lambs were processed and 77,331 head of sheep. Combined this was 5% higher than the five year seasonal average, and 23% above the same time last year. 

Yardings were also higher for the week ending the 2nd of September. Lamb throughput lifted 21% on the week prior as larger yardings in and SA offset declines in the other states. Sheep throughput jumped 31% on the week but is tracking 44% lower than the five year seasonal average.

The week ahead….

A cold front moving across eastern SA and Western NSW sent just under 40mm of rain to Port Augusta and Broken Hill during the week. This is heading east and will likely leave plenty of soggy paddocks in its tracks and limit the movement of stock in the week ahead.

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Data sources: MLA, Mecardo

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