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NZ Lamb Receipts Down Beef Up

08 May 2015

The total lamb receipts this season in New Zealand are expected to total $2.75 billion, down 1.1 per cent on the previous season.

Lamb shipments are expected to decrease by 2.9 per cent while the average value of lamb exports is estimated to increase by 3.6 per cent, according to data from the latest midseason outlook from Beef and Lamb New Zealand.

The value of lamb co-products is expected to drop by 17 per cent in 2014-15, driven by low returns for lamb skins.

The 2014-15 export lamb slaughter is forecast to decrease 2.6 per cent from the previous season to 19.8 million head.

This largely reflects an increase in non-trade hoggets retained with the flock expected to slightly recover in the year to 30 June 2015.

However, continued dry conditions could see lamb production lift.

The farm-gate prices for lambs are expected to average $97 per head for 2014-15, down 2.7 per cent from the 2013-14 lamb price of $100.

The annual farm-gate mutton price is estimated to remain unchanged at $76 per head in 2014-15.

Total beef and veal returns are expected to grow by 24 per cent to $3.49 billion in 2014-15, mainly driven by a 31 per cent rise in the average value of beef exports compared with the record high achieved in 2013-14.

However, the value of co-product exports is expected to decrease by 9.1 per cent to $482 million in 2014-15.

In the year ending in September 2015, export cattle slaughter is estimated at 2.36 million head, up 1.3 per cent compared with 2013- 14.

This rise reflects high slaughter numbers of cull cows due to a steep fall in the dairy payout and drought conditions particularly in central South Island over the 2015 summer.

Export beef production is estimated at 591,100 tonnes carcase weight in 2014-15, a 1.2 per cent increase on 2013-14.

At the mid exchange rate estimate of USD0.76, in 2014-15 the bull and steer/heifer farm-gate prices per kg are expected to increase 30 per cent compared with 2013-14, driven by strong beef prices particularly in the US.

Total gross farm revenue for the All Classes Sheep and Beef Farm is estimated at $470,500 for 2014-15, similar to 2013-14.

The largest driver of this is increased cattle revenue countering lower revenue from sheep. Total expenditure for the All Classes Sheep and Beef Farm is estimated to increase 1.2 per cent for 2014-15.

Increases in repairs and maintenance and interest expenditure are partly offset by decreases in fertiliser, lime and seeds; fuel; and cartage. In 2014-15, the nominal Farm Profit before Tax per farm for the All Classes Sheep and Beef Farm is estimated at $109,400, down one per cent from the previous year. Real Farm Profit before Tax falls 2.3 per cent after rising 36 per cent in 2013-14.

Livestock Numbers Sheep numbers at 30 June 2014 provisionally totalled 29.6 million head, down 4.0 per cent on the previous June.

This was driven by a decrease in both total hoggets (-7.1 per cent) and breeding ewes (-2.6 per cent).

Beef cattle numbers at 30 June 2014 provisionally totalled 3.64 million head, down 1.7 per cent on the previous June.

This was due to a 2.3 per cent decrease in the number of beef cows and heifers in-calf. Total dairy cattle numbers provisionally increased 4.1 per cent to 6.75 million head at 30 June 2014 as land use change continued to place pressure on prime sheep and beef country, particularly in the South Island.

The outlook to 30 June 2015 is for sheep numbers to increase slightly, beef cattle numbers to show some recovery after a period of contraction influenced by drought in the North Island, and for dairy cattle numbers to stabilise subject to the impact of drought.

Further Reading

You can view the full report by clicking here.

April 2015

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