By FW staff

LAMB prices have fallen again with values for some categories dropping by more than 4p/kg.

Farm-gate returns are almost 35% down on the same week last year and the short-term outlook is hardly uplifting.

The mood at many regular markets remains apathetic, with demand dropping off other than at Christmas fairs.

Many producers have held back lambs and this has led to better quality animals coming onto the market. But the extra supply has pushed down prices.

Medium lamb prices took the hardest fall at markets in England and Wales, dropping 4.30p to 61.90p/kg. Heavy lamb returns also suffered, easing 4.10p to 58.58p/kg.

Standard lamb prices dropped 3.68p to 59.89p/kg, slight lambs fell 2.03p to 52.21p/kg. The price of light lambs remains unchanged on last week.

Producers are also worried that the imminent increase in Meat Hygiene Service charges will knock back returns even further in the New Year.