You may all be interested to know that there is now a shortage of lambs in Walesdue to the huge number that have gone off on welfare! Farmers were so alarmed at the thought of not being able to sell their lambs that too many were sent off under the scheme. The economics of this interested me - under the scheme the farmer was paid £10 per head, the abattoir £23 per head, and the haulier £450 per bunch collected ex farm.
As lambs could only be collected from one farm at a time, some of the bunches were large and some were very small, so the financial pickings were rather good for the haulier. Farmers who normally finish store lambs on roots are having to go into England to buy in stores, and the market price is expected to go up from £2 per kilo to £3.50 in the spring. This is comparable with N. Ireland at the present time (£3.50) and France £4.50).