Largest offering of Beltex sheep for upcoming Premier Sale at Carlisle

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The Beltex Sheep Society’s upcoming Premier Sale at Carlisle next Thursday and Friday (11-12 August) has attracted its largest entry to date.

Following a successful summer show season, and a strong start to the prime lamb season, breeders of both pedigree and commercial Beltex sheep are now focussing on sales, with the breed’s largest offering of 1,394 entered into next week’s event at Borderway Mart.

Beltex have grown in popularity thanks to the breed’s ability to pass on superior carcase traits that prove popular with producers and butchers alike, due to the high meat yield and fine bone which makes for a high killing out percentage.

The breed has an ever increasing share of the terminal sire market, with pure and cross-bred lambs achieving the higher carcase grades and regularly delivering premiums of £30 to £40 above average.

Ardstewart Fred Flintstone from Wade and Alison McCrabbe, Raphoe, was the top Irish price last year at 12,000gnsArdstewart Fred Flintstone from Wade and Alison McCrabbe, Raphoe, was the top Irish price last year at 12,000gns
Ardstewart Fred Flintstone from Wade and Alison McCrabbe, Raphoe, was the top Irish price last year at 12,000gns

The breed has been showcased the length and breadth of the country, with the line-up of aged ewes at the Royal Highland Show, in particular, one that any breed would be proud of.

Beltex has claimed the Inter-breed Championship titles from Devon to Aberdeenshire, as well as in Northern Ireland.

Local shows, too, have welcomed strong Beltex classes back, and butchers lamb and carcase classes continue to see Beltex-sired lambs pick up the top prizes.

Beltex Sheep Society chairman, Kevin Buckle, commented: “Although there is a certain degree of uncertainty in the market place at the minute, as production costs continue to increase, lamb producers are looking for maximum efficiency to get the most from their commercial ewes and can have no doubt that using Beltex rams will improve their profit margins.

last year’s top price, the 30,000gns BorderEsk Finders Keepers from Anne Story, Longtownlast year’s top price, the 30,000gns BorderEsk Finders Keepers from Anne Story, Longtown
last year’s top price, the 30,000gns BorderEsk Finders Keepers from Anne Story, Longtown

“Lambs with Beltex genetics continue to lead both store and prime and the interest in the breed continues to grow. But, while the breed excels as a terminal sire, its maternal traits cannot be ignored as retained females continue to display the milkiness and mothering characteristics desired from a cross-bred commercial female.”

The Premier Sale will take place on Thursday and Friday, 11 and 12 August.

The pre-sale show will begin at 11am on Thursday with 325 shearling ewes taking to Ring 3 at 3.30pm and 242 ram lambs in Ring 2 at 4.30pm.

The 15 aged rams and 812 shearling rams will be on offer from 10am on Friday, split between the two rings.

There will be further opportunities to invest in Beltex genetics throughout the season with society and club sales taking place in the four home nations. Keep an eye on the society’s Facebook page and website for further information.

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