NZFarmer : January 19th 2010
13 Straight Furrow • January 19, 2010 AroundtheYards WITH the auctioneers still to sell his lambs Bill Birch was feeling a bit down about how prices were going at Canterbury Park saleyards in Christchurch last week. He and wife Anne had brought 55 good Texel-Suffolk lambs to the saleyards from their small block near Oxford, where they also run South Devon cattle. Before his lambs were sold he said: "They (lamb prices) appear to be down today, I'm not very happy. I suppose you come here and think you're going to get x amount.'' Their agent Tony Johns from Rural Livestock Ltd was encourag- ing though. "They're magnificent, as good as any lambs in the mar- ket.'' Half an hour later the lambs were sold, and the Birchs were feeling a bit better. The quality had been recognised and they received $99 a head for the top 10, $87.50 for another pen, while the lowest priced pen made $76. "I'm relative- ly pleased,'' Bill Birch said. Buyer for Progressive Enterprises Peter Kyle said prices for the small yarding of prime lambs were back in line with the export schedule. Domestic sales for lamb had been good through Progressive's supermarkets. "With the drop in the schedule we can bring our prices down a bit for the cus- tomer.'' Store lamb prices were high and out of kilter with prime lamb prices, he said. Minimal store num- bers had been coming through the saleyards, and on-farm store sales had been very strong. "The num- bers just aren't there.'' He said very large quantities of hay had been made this season. "I think that augers well for the calf selling season.'' Cattle had done extremely well this year because of the amount of feed available. "It's the first time I can ever remember the schedule for beef rising at this time of year.'' PGG Wrightson auctioneer Phil Manera said there was good demand from butchers for good yielding lambs that were well fin- ished. "There was a bit of a mixture there today, but there was a premi- um paid for those good yielding butchers-type lambs.'' He said prime ewes were up by about $5-$6 a head. Rural Livestock auctioneer Robbie Reid said there was a small yarding of prime cattle with prices firm on the previous week. "It's a pretty strong market still, ticking along nicely. There's a bit of grass around and everyone's quite confi- dent at the moment.'' email@example.com PRIME LAMBS Best $90 to $100 with the odd sale to $106, very good lambs $82 to $90, good $74 to $80, medium $67 to $72, lighter store types $55 to $63. PRIME EWES Best shorn good quality butchers' ewes $66 to $74, good ewes $60 to $65, medium $54 to $58, lighter $45 to $50. PRIME CATTLE Good heavy steers $1.65/kg cw, export weight heifers $1.60, local trade weight heifers $1.55, cows $1.10 to $1.20. STORE CATTLE Very light yarding. Steers $1.70, medium weight yearling heifers $1.70. Top prices for the best lambs by Howard Keene Canterbury Park: prices on the day Above: Bill and Ann Birch of Oxford confer with their agent Tony Johns (left). Below: The Birchs' yarding of prime Texel-Suffolk lambs. When he arrived, Bill was worried that lamb prices would not be as high as he'd hoped. In the end, his top 10 lambs earned $99 a head, and the Birchs went home relatively happy. Below: The auctioneers take a bid on prime lambs. Below: Some of the prime lambs for sale at Canterbury Park.
January 27th 2010