Rules mean plans for store lambs

10 October 1997

Rules mean plans for store lambs

SHEEP producers should avoid paying too much for store lambs this autumn unless they can finish them before 12 months old.

New EU rules will require the removal of the spinal column and spleen from all sheep more than 12 months old from Jan 1, 1998.

Although the legislation has still to be finalised, NFU beef and sheep adviser Dafydd Owen urges sheep producers to plan store lamb marketing carefully.

Finished lambs over 12 months – with one or more incisors erupted – from Jan 1 next year will be covered by the new regulations. Producers must consider possible effects on prices, he says.

ADAS sheep specialist Lesley Stubbings also suggests that producers who traditionally finish stores late should do more planning than they have done to ensure lambs are finished within 12 months. "It might mean looking at ways to finish stores more quickly."n

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