Australia: The Lamb industry experiencing a shortage of lambs weighing more than 30kg
Market & Price Trends
Published Dec 7, 2023
The lamb industry is facing a shortage of lambs weighing over 30 kilograms due to low prices offered by processors, which make it difficult for producers to grain feed them and achieve higher carcase weights. Many producers are opting to sell their lambs at lighter weights rather than spending money on grain feeding. This shortage has led to higher prices for lamb meat in the retail market, with the average retail price in Australia being $18.90 per kilogram in March 2023, higher than the retail price of beef.
Disclaimer: The above summary was generated by a state-of-the-art LLM model and is intended for informational purposes only. It is recommended that readers refer to the original article for more context.
The lamb industry is experiencing a shortage of lambs weighing more than 30 kilograms carcase weight, which are preferred by export processors for their higher meat yield and quality. The main reason for this shortage is the low prices that processors have been offering for lambs, which have made it difficult for producers to grain feed and achieve higher carcase weights. Grain feeding can improve the carcase weight, marbling, tenderness and flavour of lamb meat, but it also requires higher costs and risks for the producers. According to one NSW lamb producer I spoke to, the current prices that the processors are offering for lambs are not enough to cover the costs and risks of grain feeding. The lamb producer said he had opted to sell his lambs at lighter weights, rather than spending money on grain feeding, because the price fundamentals were not stacking up. He said grain feeding was expensive and risky, and he needed a fair return for his labour and costs. Many other lamb ...