WAMMCO International is adjusting its lamb contracting and export marketing processes to allow for a turn-off of lighter lambs resulting from difficult seasonal conditions in WA.
Chief Executive Des Griffiths said the cooperative had reduced the minimum weight for its recently released 2006/07 forward contracts for heavyweight lambs from 22 kilograms plus to 20 kg for delivery between September and December.
He said whereas overseas outlets were available for lighter lambs, they could not be expected to offer the returns of heavier weight markets such as North America, that WA producers had been enjoying over the past few years.
“Hopefully our overseas customers will understand the seasonal predicament faced by our lamb producers and agree to lower their weight limits. We will be making every effort to ensure that we do not lose valued markets that we have fought hard to develop.”
He said WAMMCO was concerned that if the dry conditions continued into the season, the condition of lambs, as well as their weight, would pose problems.
“Markets may be flexible on weights, but it is more difficult to compromise on condition,” he said.
“We are urging producers to seek specialist advice on maintaining their lambs in the best possible condition and to work closely with WAMMCO to optimise their value.”
Mr Griffiths said WAMMCO remained optimistic that reasonable returns could be achieved.
“It is vital for our producers as well as our customers that we meet the challenge of this difficult season to ensure our mutual long term interests,” he said.
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