Market report: New season lamb prices hold firm

Lamb prices increased slightly in the week ended 5 June, despite a continued rise in numbers coming forward.

The GB SQQ for new season lambs averaged 430.2p/kg deadweight, up from 429p/kg last week and was similar to the same week last year. Numbers coming forward rose slightly week-on-week from 21,505 head to 21,831, according to AHDB meat services.

Old season lamb marketing was drawing to a close and numbers had “dwindled”, its latest market survey said. “However, sales of 23,000 head were reported by GB auction markets in week-ended 2 June, achieving an SQQ of 161p/kg liveweight. At this level the average was 3p/kg above year earlier levels.” Cull ewe values fell by £7 on the week to £63 a head.

Both producer and retail prices for lamb increased between April and May, but the rise in retail prices was markedly higher, widening the farm-to-retail price spread to 39.2%, said the report. “Producers received almost 61% of the final retail price.”

Whole leg cuts recorded the largest monthly increase, up 6% to an average of £9.39/kg. Diced lamb was the only cut to record a fall, down by 1% to £9.87/kg.