Welcome to the AHDB Beef & Lamb Market news section.

The aim of the Market news section is to share market information and provide greater insight and analysis on market developments and industry issues in the beef and sheep meat sector.

New Zealand record a record breaking lambing percentage

Beef and Lamb New Zealand has released its estimate for the 2017 lamb crop. The total New Zealand lamb crop is estimated to be 1.9% higher than in 2016, despite fewer ewes being put to the ram. The lambing percentage rose to a historical high of 127.2%, up 4.4 percentage points on 2016; this was in part due to good weather conditions at both tupping…

New Zealand beef exports decline

Between January and October, New Zealand beef exports totalled 340.4 thousand tonnes, a 3% decline (11 thousand tonnes) on the same period last year, according to the latest data from Statistics New Zealand. Shipments of beef to Taiwan in the year-to-date fell by 21% (4.8 thousand tonnes) year-on-year, to 17.8 thousand tonnes. New Zealand exports to the US have totalled 161.7 thousand tonnes so far…

New Zealand exports of sheep meat record small rise

Sheep meat exports from New Zealand in the year-to-date stand at 326.2 thousand tonnes, a 3% (9.9 thousand tonnes) rise on the year, according to the latest data from Statistics New Zealand. As it has been noted on several occasions this year, New Zealand has exported less sheep meat to the UK, which has in part been driven by a decline in UK domestic demand.…

Deadweight lamb prices remain steady

During the week ending 29 November, the GB liveweight NSL SQQ recorded a 4.5p rise on the previous week to stand at 173.63p/kg; this is the highest the quote has been recorded at since the week ended 6 September. Auction market throughputs in the week ended 29 November totalled 113 thousand head, a similar level as last week. However, compared to the same week last…

Prime cattle prices higher

In the week ending 25 November the GB all prime average cattle price increased by 1.47p on the week to 365.75p/kg. The measure is nearly 14p above year earlier levels and follows a similar seasonal pattern as the five-year average, picking up in line with processors’ preparations in time for Christmas demand. Overall, steers gained 2.3p to average 366.5p/kg, while those meeting R4L specification rose…

Welsh lamb crop records 17 year high

As at 1 June the Welsh flock grew by 2%, to 10 million head, according to the final June survey results released by the Welsh Government. This is the largest national flock size at this point of year since 2002. The number of lambs under 1 year on farm at 1 June totalled 4.9 million, a 4% rise on the year and the highest number…

Welsh cattle numbers stable

The total number of cattle and calves in Wales as of June 2017 was relatively stable on the year at 1.14 million head; a marginal increase of 0.3% (3,000 head) on year earlier levels, according to the latest data from the Welsh Agricultural and Horticultural Survey. The female dairy herd expanded 1% (4,300 head) on the year to a total of 377,400 head in June.…

Will China’s growing appetite for beef get a further boost?

China is one of the biggest beef importers in the world. In the first nine months of 2017 imports totalled 503 thousand tonnes, a 15% increase compared to the same period last year. Compared to the same period in 2015, this is a 57% increase. Over the last ten years beef imports to China have increased significantly from the lows of 1.2 thousand tonnes in…

Liveweight lamb prices lower, but deadweight higher

In the week ended 22 November, the GB liveweight NSL SQQ fell 0.46p on the week to 169.13p/kg; 2.46p below year earlier levels. Nonetheless, the current quote is still 7.02p above the 5 year average. At 114.5 thousand head, auction market throughputs declined 9% on the previous week, but remain 6% higher than the equivalent week last year. Cull ewe throughputs totalled 36.7 thousand head;…

Deadweight cattle prices rise again

In the week ending 18 November the GB all prime average cattle price increased by 2.5p on the week to 364.27p/kg. The current measure is 14.5p above year earlier levels, and is around 7.5p above the five year average for this time of year. Every category of prime animal recorded a price increase. Overall, steers gained 1.5p to average 364.2p/kg, while those meeting R4L specification…

EU Autumn Economic Forecast published

The autumn update of the EU economic forecast from the European Commission, details the projected growth of the EU and individual member states until 2019. Exceeding the spring forecast, the real GDP growth for the euro economy area is now expected to reach 2.2% in 2017; the fastest pace in a decade, while the EU economy as a whole should grow 2.3% this year. However,…

Romanian sheep meat production increases

In Romania sheep are usually kept for milk production with meat as a by-product. Most sheep in Romania are kept out on pasture, receiving little grain. In December 2016 the Romanian national flock stood at 9.88 million head, with a national breeding flock of 8.4 million head, according to data from Eurostat. In December 2016, 90% of the national breeding flock were milk ewes. Romanians…