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.

Increase in US beef production

As the largest beef producer in the world and fourth largest exporter the US has great influence over the global beef market. US beef production in September totalled around one million tonnes, which is 2% higher than September 2016, according to the latest data from the USDA. Total production in the first nine months of the year stood at 8.82 million tonnes, up 5% on…

Sheep on feedlots in the US

Since World War II the sheep industry in the US has contracted from 56 million head to 5.2 million head. According to data from the USDA, the breeding flock on 1 January 2017 stood at 3.8 million head, and the FAO Food Outlook forecasts US sheep meat production this year to be 75 thousand tonnes. The US sheep industry broadly falls into two production systems.…

Beef and lamb farm incomes boosted in 2016/17

The average Farm Business Income (FBI) for farms grazing livestock in England has reportedly increased in 2016/17, according to the latest figures from Defra. In lowland areas, FBI rose 33% on the year, from £12,000 to £16,100. Meanwhile, FBI of farms grazing livestock in less favoured areas (LFAs) grew 42% to £27,000; the highest FBI since 2011/12. The FBI increase in both areas can be…

Cull ewe throughputs down in September

Cull ewe throughputs traditionally reach their seasonal peak in September and October, when producers refine their flocks for the coming breeding season. However, this year cull ewe auction market throughputs appear to have bucked this trend. Auction market throughputs of cull ewes in September fell by 10% (18,700 head) on the year and 16% (34,500 head) on the month to 176,900 head. However, in July…

Ireland beefs up its cattle production

At the beginning of the year, Bord Bia forecast an increase in the number of finished cattle supplies in Ireland of 100-110 thousand head, or 6% compared with 2016, driven by an increase of 130,000 in calf registrations in 2015. Combined with little expected change in carcase weights, this could lead to an increase in export availability of 6%, to 565,000 tonnes (cwe). In 2016,…

Guest Article: WHAT CAN THE RED MEAT SECTOR LEARN FROM OTHERS?

Background The general industry wisdom is that post Brexit, farmers around the UK will need to up their game, almost regardless of what sort of deal with the rest of Europe we end up with. There is the strong likelihood of reduced Pillar I & II style support payments, at some stage in the future. As a result, beef and sheep producers will be under…

Little change in lamb prices

During the week ending 1 November the GB liveweight NSL SQQ remain firm at 166.51p/kg, just a 0.5p fall on the week. The quote is just 0.28p above the same week last year. Daily prices have fluctuated throughout the week, with Wednesday 1 November recorded a price of 165.77p/kg. Auction market throughputs remained firm compared to last week at 111.7 thousand head, however this is…

GB cattle prices remain relatively stable

In the week ending 28 October, the GB all prime average cattle price recorded a marginal decline on the previous week of 0.41p, to 359.61p/kg. The latest quote is now 10.14p above year earlier levels. Estimated prime cattle slaughterings over the same period fell by 1% on the week, to 31,700 head. It has been reported that available supplies are starting to tighten somewhat as…

AHDB outlook for UK sheep market published

The latest AHDB sheep market outlook has been published. According to the June survey, which Defra have now released provisional data for, there has been a small rise in numbers. Based upon estimated NSL slaughterings and the June survey, there could be as much as a 3% rise in the 2017 lamb crop. Clean sheep slaughterings in the first three quarters of 2017 have been…

AHDB outlook for UK beef market published

The latest AHDB beef market outlook has been published. According to the provisional June survey data released by Defra, there has been a slight decline in the UK breeding herd as at 1 June 2017. Both the dairy and beef breeding herds contracted by around 0.5% on the year. Despite the improvement, at least in the short term, in the dairy prices the effects of…

Scottish cattle herd contracts

As at 1 June, Scotland’s cattle herd stood at 1.78 million head, a 1% (22.5 thousand head) fall year-on-year, according to final census results released by the Scottish Government. The decline has largely been driven by a decrease in male cattle over 1 year old, coupled with the breeding herd also falling back. The number of male cattle over 1 fell by 3% (8.6 thousand…

Scottish sheep flock grows

As at 1 June, the number of sheep in Scotland increased by 2% (159 thousand head) on the year, to 7 million head, according to final census results from the Scottish Government. This is the largest number recorded at this point in time since 2008. The breeding flock as at 1 June stood at 3.3 million head, 1% (30.8 thousand head) higher year on year.…