WITH prices at the prime sale on Wednesday up to 20 cents per kilo better than the previous week, and upwards of 15ml of rain in the gauges overnight, the scene was set for a lift in prices at the store cattle sale at the Leongatha VLE Saleyards last Thursday.
And while they didn’t reach the heady heights of earlier this year, they did improve and according to several fatteners, there was something in it for both sides of the equation.
Darren McAinsh of Sanbah Hereford at Yanakie had two big pens of Hereford steers in the first row to be sold, and wasn’t altogether happy with the result.
A pen of 21 April weaned steers, averaging 293kg, described by auctioneer Neil Park of SEJ as “lovely steers”, nonetheless sold for $800 a head, which probably tipped the balance in favour of the buyer.
The second pen, also of 21 bigger Hereford steers averaging 336kg sold for $960, a better return.
But Darren said afterwards he would have liked to see up to another $100-a-head on the price.
“Oh well they’re gone now and they’ll be someone else’s problem,” he said.
A lot of the talk around the rails was how much rain everyone got overnight with Owen Lester of Koorooman saying he was pleased with half an inch during a chat with Tarry Ginnane of Landmark before the conversation drifted on to horse racing.
But the pleasant feelings reduced the further east you went with Stan Harrison of Giffard West, who had a good run of Charolais and Angus cattle in the market reporting he’d only had 1ml overnight continuing the dry trend.
“We had a bad frost in July which turned the pastures up and we haven’t had much since then.
A pen of his Charolais/Angus cross steers, however, had wintered very well with plenty of meat on their big frames and ready to go for the next buyer who paid an average of $1317 when the stock were sold by Phelan and Henderson.
Anxious about being later in the sale, Mr Harrison was ultimately pleased with the result.
Auctioneer for Elders, Rohan McRae, said the lift in prices at the store sale reflected both the fat sale on Wednesday and an improving trend up the coast in NSW.
“Prices seem to be on a bit of an up but the weather will be the key from here. There weren’t as many in (at the fat sale on Wednesday) but quality lifted and there was more demand,” he said.