Thursday 21 September, 2023

View from the rostrum: Hopes for a strong start to 2022

Johnny Dymond on impressive trading.

clock • 2 min read
View from the rostrum: Hopes for a strong start to 2022

Jonny Dymond on impressive trading.

With 2021 coming to a close, we look back on two years which will certainly be etched in history. What we all initially feared in March 2020 with lockdowns, coupled with Brexit and the impending doom for market values has not been realised - rather the opposite.

As I write, we have just concluded our weekly Tuesday auction at Shrewsbury where the prime lambs have again risen in the week, with trade peaking at £170, or 321p/kg, with all lambs in the market averaging 276p/kg or £120.

This, coupled with a tremendous trade in our weekly dairy sale peaking at £2,300 for Holsteins, and New Zealand crossbreds selling to £1,450, we can only say that despite spiralling costs, managing carbon emissions and a public who are told daily to change their diet/lifestyle, our agricultural markets seem stronger than ever.

In my years in the industry, I have never known a back end like it. Trade has simply gone from strength to strength. Very few, if any, buyers have even hinted at the fact they are getting towards full capacity, with exceptionally dry and mild grazing conditions meaning extended grazing for many.

The result has been suckled calves sales peaking at £2,180, while bullocks averaged £1,257 at Bishop's Castle auction. In the store cattle rings, £1,500 and more has become a weekly occurrence, something which only 18 months ago would have been the stuff of dreams.

Relationships between vendor, buyer and auctioneer have been tested throughout 2020/21. Each member of the system has been put under extra pressure and had to put their trust in the other throughout the lockdown(s). We have generally all come out stronger, which cannot be said for all industries.

I look forward to 2022 with great excitement at what trade will hold. I can only see livestock prices increasing, how high they will go nobody knows.

As an industry we all thrive on the buzz that positive trade brings and those trades will be ever more important to all farming businesses next year, I am sure. Best regards of the festive season to all and a prosperous New Year.

Jonny Dymond

Jonny Dymond is senior auctioneer and manager at Shrewsbury Auction Centre - Halls. Call 01743 462 620, or email [email protected]