Scottish Farmers Union Welcomes Pre-easter Lift To Lamb Trade

Sheep prices have bounced back in recent days to provide a welcome boost to Scotland’s farmers and crofters as we head into Easter.

Markets and abattoirs had to significantly readjust and respond to changes in the lamb market a fortnight ago, with a significant impact on prices and trade.  However, since then, markets have stabilised and improved.

Auctioneers selling sheep at Ayr and Lanark yesterday both reported very strong demand and prices for prime hoggs averaged between 200p and 203p per kilo.

NFU Scotland President Andrew McCornick who farms in Dumfries and Galloway said “It remains a testament to the hard work of many in the food chain that we have been able to keep markets, abattoirs, processors and distribution going throughout the crisis, to ensure that out butchers, local stores and supermarkets can all have fresh, tasty Scotch lamb on offer this Easter.
“Despite the worrying drop in sheep prices and market disruption a fortnight ago, that period of readjustment saw a positive rebound in the price of lamb going through Scottish marts last week, demonstrating a healthy demand in light of the impact of COVID-19. 
“That lift appears to have been sustained this week and we are hopeful that forthcoming Easter celebrations, and the start of the Muslim month of Ramadan in a few weeks will keep the momentum going throughout an uncertain time.
“Additionally. the increase in cooking hearty meals from scratch in households across the country could result in an increased understanding of the versatility and flavour of Scotch lamb.” 

NFU Scotland continues to remind those taking sheep to the mart that they should speak to auctioneers or procurement officers beforehand to ensure that they are aware of safety requirements at the market.  It’s also vital to remind buyers to obey social distancing guidelines when in the mart, as outlined by the Institute of Auctioneers and Appraisers in Scotland (IAAS) at: https://iaas.co.uk/iaas-issues-updated-advice-to-auction-marts-in-light-of-lockdown-status-for-covid-19/

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