Bigger and quicker

Livestock | 14th July 2022 | By Matt Dalgleish

The Snapshot

  • MLA expect the pace of the flock rebuild to quicken over 2022 with the flock now forecast to reach 76 million head this year.
  • A national flock approaching 79 million head by 2023 is now anticipated by MLA and this will be the largest flock seen since the 2006/07 season.
  • MLA now expect lamb slaughter for the 2022 season to hit 22 million head, up 2% from their February 2022 estimates of 21.6 million head.
  • However, higher growth to the flock into 2023 has MLA pegging back it’s sheep slaughter volumes for 2023 with a 5.7% decline noted in forecast slaughter volumes from 8.1 million head to 7.6 million head.

The Detail

Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) have released their July 2022 update to their sheep industry projections with some adjustments being made to flock and slaughter estimates. Earlier in the season a TEM analysis piece looking at the Sheep Turnoff Ratio (STR) for the March 2022 quarter highlighted that the very low STR was suggesting that the flock would rebuild quicker during 2022.

In the MLA July update the pace of the flock rebuild has quickened with the flock now forecast to reach 76 million head this year, up 2.2% from MLA’s February estimates of 74.35 million head. The flock is expected to grow larger into 2023 also with a further 3.3% lift in flock projections noted such that MLA anticipate the flock to hit 78.75 million head by the end of 2023. A national flock approaching 79 million head will be the largest flock seen since the 2006/07 season.

The favourable season has delivered a larger lamb cohort and MLA now expect lamb slaughter for the 2022 season to hit 22 million head, up 2% from their February estimates of 21.6 million head. This will be the highest annual lamb slaughter levels since 2018.

Lamb slaughter volumes for 2023 remain relatively unchanged at 22.6 million head.

There has been similar revisions to sheep slaughter volumes for the 2022 season, with MLA increasing sheep slaughter estimates by 2% to 6.1 million head. However, higher growth to the flock into 2023 has MLA pegging back it’s sheep slaughter forecast for 2023 with a 5.7% decline noted in slaughter volumes from 8.1 million head (from their February 2002 projections) to 7.6 million head, according to their July 2022 sheep industry update.

Tags

  • Sheep
  • Lamb
  • Restocking
  • Supply and Demand