WEANER sales bucked the prime cattle trend last week, with some averaging as much as $100 a head dearer than sales in recent weeks.
The surge in weaner supply did little to hold back the dearer trend – a record number of weaners offered at Carcoar last Friday still averaged higher than the store sale the week before.
This was on the back of a softer Eastern Young Cattle Indicator, which on Tuesday settled at 494.75 cents a kilogram (carcase weight).
Ray White Emms Mooney offered the largest run of weaners during Friday’s multi-agent sale at Carcoar and agent Ben Emms said their clients’ cattle presented with all the genetic potential for which the tablelands calves were known.
A record 12,865 weaners were offered at Carcoar which is believed to be the biggest single-day weaner sale held in Australia
It was this quality that brought the buyers to the rail and kept them there right through the sale.
“This season the calves were lighter as a whole than normal, which presented purchasers with the opportunity to buy lower dollar cattle,” Mr Emms said.
“Current seasonal conditions in the Central Tablelands are some of the worst since 2006-07 which presented perspective purchases a marvellous opportunity with restricted local competition operating.”
Carcoar’s Central Tablelands Livestock Exchange operations manager, Brock Syphers, said during the past few weeks there had been some of the largest numbers offered through CTLX in both the prime and store market due to the current season being experienced across the region.
He said last Friday a record 12,865 weaners were offered, which was also believed to be the biggest single-day weaner sale held in Australia.
Agents reported the market lifted about $75 to $100 on the steers when compared to the previous Friday’s store sale, while heifers were $25 to $40 a head dearer.
This meant the bulk of the steers were making 280c/kg to 315c/kg (liveweight).
Buyers came from as far as Roma, Dalby and Blackall in Queensland, and Victorian districts such as Hamilton, through to Mt Gambier in South Australia. But is wasn’t just in the Central Tablelands where “out of town” buyers were putting a solid floor in the market.
Schute Bell Badgery Lumby Braidwood manager, Anthony Atkinson, said the Braidwood weaner sale market was “firm on the current trend”.
He noted the Victorian buyers were solid, and supported by a few of restockers from the South Coast who have a “bit of feed”.
“Considering the season, the quality on offer was magnificent,” he said.
“The weights are lighter than last year, but vendors are selling four to six weeks earlier.”
Mr Atkinson noted it was reassuring that restockers had confidence in the cattle market despite the doubtful seasonal outlook.
He said the heavier end of the steers sold from 286c/kg to 296c/kg, while the heifers sold for 220c/kg on the lighter end, 264c/kg for the heavier end.
“The lighter end got a bit sticky in places, but given the season it was quite extraordinary getting that sort of money,” he said.
In the north of the state at Armidale, Glen Innes and Inverell weaner sales last week, Queensland buyers bought confidently as prices were low by comparison to the past couple of years.
One agent from Wandoan, Qld, said Central Queensland was looking good after earlier rain and buyers were taking the opportunity of the lower prices to increase their numbers.
Prices held firm on the previous fortnight’s prime market, with steers at Inverell selling from 310c/kg to 330c/kg with the better, lighter end up to 340c/kg.
Brad Newsome, Landmark Glen Innes, said the heavier end of the steer calves made 270c/kg to 280c/kg for the Herefords, however, the crossbred calves made a bit more with the interest from Central Queensland after rain six to eight weeks ago.