Station-bred Angus cows with calves off leased country at Stratford sold to a Gloucester saleyards record price of $4800 at Friday's Gloucester female sale, hosted by Gooch Agencies, setting a trend that continued right through the open auction sale.
The Denyer family, who trade as Denell Partnership and run an organic dairy at Belbora, were forced to reluctantly sell the 24 Angus cows with first and second calves sired by Corrys Glen bulls, Bakers Creek, after their lease on mining land at Stratford wasn't renewed.
"We wouldn't have sold them otherwise," Charlie Denyer said.
Buyer Peter Madden, Malacco Farm at Mondrook, across the Manning River from Taree, said the price reflected the times.
"If you want quality breeders you have to meet the market," Mr Madden said.
At the special female breeder store sale more than 1600 head went under the hammer with cows and calves selling no less than $2400 and averaging about $3000.
Singleton processor Edward Throsby paid $4500 for Murray Grey cows with calves from a Maine Anjou bull produced by Kelvin and Marie Gregory, Bretti.
When asked if he thought this market was the new reality he shook his head. "This is unreality. This is ridiculous but it will remain like this while ever it continues to rain."
One woman watching the bidding on a pen of Brahman-cross from Wingham that reached $3150 commented to her friends that she was scared to wipe hair from her mouth in case the auctioneer James Gooch might think she was willing to pay an even better price.
Big framey cows with an ability to finish with weight turned the eye of bidders including a pen of Angus with cows, by Knowla bulls from Sid Johnston, Bucketts Road, who put them up for sale to make room for a new line of heifers and collected $3600 in the process.
Robert Dee, Buladelah, sold cows on their second calves last Friday for $3800 a head.
RMA NSW co-ordinator John Peden was impressed by the phenomenal prices paid at Fridays sale but not too surprised.
"It shows there is confidence in the industry," Mr Peden said.
"This is a combination of high prices to producers, the season low interest rates and low herd numbers.
"There is not a lot that we can see pointing to a big slip in the market anytime soon."
Mr Peden pointed to an RMA webinar broadcast last week featuring industry expert Simon Quilty saying that his view was bouyant - including global prices for beef down the track.
Best blacks from Weemilah heifers at Forbesdale sporting Knowla blood brought $3400 for 28 head with a bid from John and Dianne Stidolph with their son Mathew, Buladelah, who will put them to Knowla bulls.
For retired dairy farmer Allan Isaac who has spent the past 38 of his 86 years breeding Murray Grey cattle, the Gloucester sale was bittersweet in that 35 of his last breeders went under the hammer.
Mr Isaac's pregnancy-tested-in-calf cows made $2450 and went to repeat buyer Edward Throsby while the heifers, red taggers, sold for $2500 to Ian and Kathy Sansom, Gloucester, who will eventually put them to a Murray Grey bull.
Rob Larkins, Warillah feedlot at Gilgandra, was in the market for a few of the more affordable pens paying to a top of $2400 for Angus cows with calves.
A pen of Texas Longhorn brought $2100 going to Warren Buttsworth, Bucketts Way, who has a few at home already and was willing to pay the price.
Reg and Jill Robinson, Cessnock, bought 19 Santa Gertrudis-cross heifers for $2400 each and will put them to a Speckle Park bull.