With many coastal producers running dangerously low on water supplies for livestock, last Thursday's yarding was the biggest ever seen in Kempsey Regional Saleyards. With 192 vendors and 88 buying invoices issued, just under 2500 mixed quality cattle were presented, of which almost 80% were weaners, vealers and yearlings. A wide range of buyers present with four orders from Queensland and several from southern New South Wales and Victoria. Market trends fluctuated against last fortnight's sale, with buyers being very selective on lesser quality and plainer conditioned, light weight cattle.
Weaner calves up to 200kg slipped 14 cents on last sale, with the best Angus and Angus X steers in this weight range reaching 234.2c/kg. Heifers in this weight range sold from 110c/kg to 180c/kg, with the odd sale of the heavier end over 200c/kg. Weaners from 200kg to 280kg were down 18 cents on last sale, reaching 260.2c/kg for steers, while the heifer portion generally sold between 160c/kg and 234c/kg for the better quality types. Veal to processors in this weight range topped at 216.2c/kg, with most sales from 170c/kg to 200c/kg. Heavy veal up to 330kg topped at 244.2c/kg.
Consignments increased by 20% and the quality was mixed. The majority of the younger drafts were suitable for the restocker and lot feeder orders, with fair numbers of the high yielding prime conditioned younger cattle also penned. Cows numbers decreased marginally and the full complement of buyers were operating. The over 200kg vealer steers and heifers to the restockers remained close to firm, with the steers varying from 190c to 290c, while the heifer portion sold from 194c to 262c/kg.
The medium weight yearling steers to the lot feeders reached 292c, which was dearer than the previous market, however averaged close to firm, making from 248c to 292c/kg. The yearling heifers to feed lifted 6c and made from 220c to 258c/kg. The best vealers to the trade reached 318c, with the majority of the prime yearlings receiving approximately from 220c to 280c/kg. The older steers to feed received from 240c to 260c/kg, with the majority showing fewer teeth compared to the last market. The cows sold 5c dearer, with the plainer pens making from 150c to 186c, while the better covered heavy weights made from 178c to 215c/kg. The best heavy weight bull topped at 210c/kg.
A total yarding of 950 liveweight cattle this week. Vealer trend 10-20 c/kg dearer, restocker trend 15-35 c/kg, and export trend remained firm. Best vealers 260-336 c/kg; medium vealers 200-245 c/kg; light vealers 200-270 c/kg; restocker steers 230-310 c/kg; restocker heifers 170-245 c/kg; cows 120-200 c/kg; bulls 170-217 c/kg.
The market was firm to cheaper with a total of 300 head yarded. The market consisted of weaners and mainly light cattle, with few cows on offer. Yearling steers topped at $890. Best of the weaners made to $720. Heifers sold to a much cheaper trend.