5 April 1996

Scots cattle short but…

AUCTION sales of prime and store cattle in Scotland have been low on numbers but reasonable on price. And sheep of all classes have continued to benefit from the problems in the beef sector.

A show and sale of store cattle at Thurso on Monday saw 155 of the 173 entries sold. Steers averaged 107.5p/kg and heifers 96.4p/kg. Auctioneer Iain Thomson said that, until the BSE crisis, he had 1200 animals booked for the sale.

At Perth last Friday, 70 stores were sold compared with a normal level of 900. But David Leggat reported that trade held up remarkably well, with steers averaging 116p/kg and heifers 105p/kg. Mr Leggat sold 25 prime cattle to local butchers on Monday.

The store cattle entry at Aberdeen on the same day was 234 compared with the normal level of 1200. Steers and heifers both averaged 103p/kg, with a top price of 171p/kg.

New season lambs, meanwhile, made to 205p/kg at Stirling. Feeding ewes have eased back by about £10 a head but plenty at Aberdeen last Friday were making between £80 and £90. Store hoggs made up to £73.

Ewes with lambs at foot are becoming more plentiful and making about £35 to £40 a life.