Image of sheep


Lamb Market Setting Record Highs

The lamb cutout value continues to set new record highs, with the most recent record value of $464.33 per cwt. set the first week of May. Last week, the cutout value did drop by $9.61 per cwt. (2.1 percent) to $454.73. Since the start of the year to the most recent record-high value, the lamb cutout has gained $80.67 per cwt. in value or 21 percent.

The major primal values have also seen records set within the last several weeks. The shoulder (square cut), leg (trotter off), and rack (light) all reached record price levels last week to $378.47, $510.88, and $1,062.02, respectively. The loin (trimmed 4×4) reached its record level two weeks ago at $809.98 per cwt., but has since decreased to $763.33.

The rise in the lamb cutout value has filtered down to feeder and fed lamb prices. The national negotiated live slaughter lamb price reached $198.88 and is quickly closing in on the record price of $204 set nearly a decade ago in July 2011. Since the start of the year, the slaughter lamb price has gained 29.1 percent ($44.85 per cwt.), which has exceeded the 21 percent gain in the cutout value during the same period. The three-market average (Colo., S.D. and Texas) feeder lamb price has fluctuated since the start of the year but has managed to average more than $260 per cwt this year, which is well above the five-year average of around $200 per cwt.

Weekly sheep and lamb slaughter started to see levels increase the last week of February, which would be expected given Easter was earlier this year on April 4. Typically, slaughter levels will start to decline following Easter but this year the pace has remained steady. Since the last week of February, preliminary estimated weekly sheep slaughter averaged about 36,000 head, but actual weekly slaughter averaged about 41,500 head – around 5,500 head higher on average. Recent weeks have seen actual slaughter as much as 10,000 head higher than the estimated slaughter for the same week.

These are levels well above pre-pandemic weekly slaughter and higher than levels prior to the close of the Mountain States Rosen plant in July 2020. The higher actual slaughter shows that the increased slaughter capacity is starting to take effect in the industry. Record cutout values highlight the post-pandemic demand recovery that is starting to occur, which is giving an economic incentive for packers to slaughter lambs and producers to actively market lambs.

Click Here to read the full story.

Source: Livestock Marketing Information Center


ASI SheepCast: ESA, Transportation & Budgets

This week’s American Sheep Industry Association SheepCast looks at ongoing efforts around the Endangered Species Act, an update on all things transportation and more on tax as we await the president’s budget proposal.

Click Here to listen to the podcast.


Sheep Herding Doubles as Wildfire Prevention

Hundreds of the Borda family’s sheep are eating their way through Kings Canyon (Nev.). The migration is part of a fuel reduction project and an annual sheep herding tradition.

The family has herded sheep in Nevada for more than a century, all starting when Ted Borda’s grandfather came to the area in 1914. The Borda family has kept the business intact ever since, and in the last few years has partnered with the Bureau of Land Management and several other forestry and government agencies for targeted grazing.

Ted calls this fuel reduction project a win-win because not only do his sheep get fed, but the land he grew up on will also be less prone to wildfire. The sheep will be migrating to the Dayton (Nev.) area for their annual sheep herd down Main Street this Sunday.

Click Here for the full story and video.

Source: Fox 11


Texas Webinars to Discuss Dorper Sheep, Wildfires

The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service will present two On the Line with AgriLife webinars in June. The webinars will be June 1 and June 15.

Both programs will begin at 8:30 a.m. central time. The dates, topics and presenters for these webinars are:

  • June 1: The Pros and Cons of Raising Dorper Sheep in Texas, Brad Roeder, AgriLife Extension agent, Gillespie County.
  • June 15, Wildfire Concerns in Texas, Morgan Treadwell, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension range specialist, San Angelo.

Click Here to register for one or both of these webinars.


Pipestone Sheep for Profit School is July 7-10

Mark your calendar and plan to attend the 2021 Pipestone Lamb and Wool Sheep for Profit School, which will be held July 7-10 in Pipestone, Minn. This will be the 11th course offering with 197 past participants from 24 different states and Canada completing the course.

The Sheep for Profit School is a professional management and business school for the sheep industry. The purpose of the school is to help producers improve their sheep management skills, increase profitability and form relationships in the business.

Enrollment in the school is limited to create an ideal learning environment and allow for one-on-one advising. Visit for registration information and a course schedule. For more information, contact the Pipestone Lamb and Wool Management Program, Minnesota West Community and Technical College, PO Box 250, Pipestone, MN 56164, 800-658-2330 or


California Offers Half-Day Producer Workshops

The University of California Cooperative Extension, the California Wool Growers Association and the University of Wyoming are teaming to offer two, half-day producer workshops that will focus on real-world tools for managing risk in the sheep industry.

The agenda for the workshops includes various insurance programs, economic tools, electronic identification and more. The workshops are scheduled for June 23 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. pacific time at Foster’s Bighorn Restaurant in Rio Vista, Calif., and June 24 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. pacific time at the Wool Growers Restaurant in Bakersfield, Calif.

Click Here to register for the June 23 workshop.

Click Here to register for the June 24 workshop.


Australian Market Increases Once Again

The Australian wool market recorded a small overall increase for the second consecutive week. In a similar result to the previous series, the overall lift in the market was largely due to the finer Merino fleece types.

The strongest buyer sentiment was concentrated in wools 18 micron and finer. This increased sentiment resulted in strong price rises in this range, which was reflected in the individual Micron Price Guides for 18 micron as it added between 22 and 79 cents across the country for the series. The buyer enthusiasm for the finer types was not as evident in the medium to broad microns, pushing prices down for 20 micron and broader. The MPGs for 20 micron and coarser fell by between 6 and 38 cents.

The losses in these types – combined with losses in the crossbred market – prevented the AWEX Eastern Market Indicator from recording a more substantial increase. The EMI closed the week at 1,320 Australian cents – a rise of 5 cents. The minimal overall movement in the market has been welcomed, with many in the industry preferring a steady market rather than the large, unpredictable fluctuations sometimes witnessed during the previous 12 months. This steadiness in the market has been reflected in the movements of the EMI in the previous four weeks. During this time, the EMI has traded within 9 cents of the 1,315-cent mark.

The crossbred sector followed the same pattern as the broader Merinos, recording overall losses for the fourth series in a row. The MPGs for 26 to 30 micron posted losses of between 1 and 15 cents. The only crossbred MPG to manage an increase was 32 micron, which rose by the smallest of margins (+1 cent). Next week’s national offering decreases slightly.

Source: AWEX


Coalition Calls for Support of Domestic PPE Manufacturing

The American Sheep Industry Association joined a coalition of groups representing American manufacturers this week in calling on the U.S. Senate to support domestic manufacturers and their supply chains through the Homeland Procurement Reform Act.

“Notably, Sen. Shaheen, Sen. Hassan, Sen. Rounds and Sen. Moran have introduced S.1009, the Homeland Procurement Reform Act to ensure that key components of the Department of Homeland Security can procure critical equipment developed and manufactured in the United States to execute their security, enforcement and investigative missions,” read the letter to the Senate majority and minority leaders. “We have consistently encouraged Congress to identify opportunities to empower federal agency procurement officers to invest in American supply chains and provide high quality, innovative PPE and equipage produced in the United States. The HOPR Act establishes specific criteria that the Department of Homeland Security must meet when procuring certain uniform and PPE items.

“As the Senate continues consideration of USICA amendments, we respectfully request your support for HOPR Act inclusion in its complete and original form. We understand that there have been suggested technical changes to the bill that will not only negatively impact U.S. manufacturers, but also reduce the PPE and critical safety items included in the HOPR amendment text. Removing critical lifesaving PPE and safety items will weaken the intent of the HOPR Act and increase the possibility that DHS frontline personnel will receive low-quality, foreign-made equipment.”

Skip to content