Australia

Aussie sheep inventory is rising

Livestock

The latest MLA/AWI sheepmeat and wool survey results showed that 31% of producers are looking to increase their flocks, 60% are going to maintain flock numbers and 7% are going to reduce their flocks.

Posted on Apr 27 ,09:48

Aussie sheep inventory is rising

Australia is increasing the national sheep inventory, as the latest MLA/AWI sheepmeat and wool survey showed. 31% of producers are looking to increase their flocks, 60% are going to maintain flock numbers and 7% are going to reduce their flocks, according to the survey. The latest survey results found that of the total 42,351,464 breeding ewes on hand, 74% are Merino, or wool producing, and 26% are non-Merino. Breeding ewe numbers have increased by 1.1 million head as the flock growth continues.
The survey found that of the 19,487,990 lambs on hand, 56% are pure bred Merino and 44% are non-Merino. There were 1.1 million head more breeding ewes this year – numbers that are 3% up year-on-year. This indicates that there will be increased activity in the mutton market throughout the rest of the year.
Many of the non-Merino dominant farms are found in the SA, VIC and southern NSW. The Merino farms are found in northern NSW, QLD and the wheatbelt of WA.
In NSW, the total breeding ewes has increased 8% to 17.6 million but there are 15,300 less lambs on hand. This is the largest increase in breeding ewes across the nation year-on-year.
In the last four months between November 2021 and February 2022, there have been 5.3 million lambs marked. Most of these were Merino lambs at 63%, pure meat at 16% and first cross at 9%. There were 5.8 million ewes joined with national marking rates at 83% for Merino breed and 99% for non-Merino breeds. The expected sales in the next four months can give an indication of the future make-up of the national flock. Of the 8,031,561 expected sales, 32% is forecast to be Merino, 27% pure meat, 25% first cross and all other breeds making up 16%, says the MLA report.

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