UFU urging sheep producers to focus on the market and sell their sheep when they are ready.
The Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU) says that as the lamb trade continues to stabilise, with an increase in demand from processors, it is vital farmers market their lamb to ensure sustainable returns.
The UFU says demand has been strong thanks to reduced third country imports of lamb to the UK and the Islamic festival Eid al-Adha boosting prices. Despite those positives, prices here are down 6p/kg on last week.
UFU beef and lamb chairman Sam Chesney said: “Lamb prices have been volatile this spring as a result of COVID-19.
“However, market conditions are beginning to improve as there is a strong demand. Religious festivals across the EU are having a positive impact and helping the export trade to recover.
Sell lambs when prime says UFU
“Farmers should weigh their lambs regularly and sell them when they are at their prime. They must look at all options for increasing revenue.
“There is a strong demand for store lambs at present, and we are encouraging our farmers to sell lambs at the correct weight and fat cover in accordance with retailer specifications.
“Processors here are paying up to 21kgs but some in the Republic of Ireland are paying between 21.5-22kgs which leaves sheep producers killing locally at a disadvantage.
“Our farmers have continued to overcome numerous obstacles to ensure that product continues to be moved off farm, reaching shop shelves so consumers can purchase food when needed without worrying about how it was produced or where it came from.”