Libya opens doors to Irish sheep

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Libya opens doors to Irish sheep

July 02
11:38 2013

Following the Republic of Ireland’s successful reintroduction of cattle shipments to Libya earlier this year, the renewed trade link is expected to open up to its first sheep shipment this week.

Irish mart prices have strengthened on the back of strong demand for live exports, including the Libyan deal, which is expected to number 4,000-5,000 lambs. A veterinary health certificate approving the deal was issued just over a week ago.

Trade and prices were livelier at the end of last week, due to the strong live trade, according to the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) weekly lamb price update, with factories paying €5.50/kg up to 21.5kg.

IFA National Sheep Committee chairman James Murphy said Ramadan on 9 July should introduce much-needed competition into the trade at this critical time. Lamb prices stabilised in the last half of June on the back of tight supplies and strong market returns, but had been pushed down by factory price pressure earlier in the month.

Murphy said the IFA was working hard and making good progress on the expansion of the live export trade for Irish lambs, with Irish exporters the main players on the export markets at this time of year.

At a meeting between the IFA and the National Farmers’ Union in the UK last month, the Union asked Irish processors not to undermine the export market in France with cheaper product.

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