15 Nov 2011

Processors forecast sharp drop in lamb prices

7:46 am on 15 November 2011

Farmers have been warned to expect a sharp drop in lamb prices when increased supplies start coming through to meat processors later in the season.

Lamb processing has been running about 20% behind last year.

The companies are struggling to get stock because good growing conditions in most areas have given farmers plenty of grass, so they are in no hurry to send them to the works.

A market analyst with NZX-Agrifax, Nick Handley, says as a result, processors have been paying very high prices to get lambs, but he says that will not last.

The grass flush means North Island beef processors are also having a lean time of it getting the cattle they need.

Mr Handley says they are missing out on some export sales as result.