The first winners of the Northern Beltex Club’s prime lamb competition, running at local marts across the summer, have been announced.
Beltex cross lambs regularly feature in the top 5% of prices at the region’s markets, an achievement recognised with a new venture launched by the Northern Beltex Club.
A £50 prize is being awarded to commercial producers for a pen of five or more lambs by a registered Beltex ram and achieving the highest p/kg price at three of the region’s leading marts throughout the summer.
At Acklington Mart in June, the top price of 302p/kg was set at its summer prize show and sale of prime sheep by the champion pen of five 42kg lambs from Fiona Mellor, Beadnell, Northumberland. These were sired by Nursery Magnificent and sold to Bowood Yorkshire Lamb, Thirsk, North Yorkshire.
At Wooler Livestock Centre in July, 283p/kg was achieved by HN Howard and Son, Alnwick, Northumberland. This was for a pen of five lambs weighing 37kg and sold to R Curle and Sons.
Hexham Mart did not sell a Beltex cross pen in August,
Beltex Sheep Society chairwoman Maimie Paterson said: “Beltex cross lambs continue to grow in popularity with Northern commercial producers, who are switching on to the premiums paid in the live ring for their superior carcase quality and high killing out percentage.
“Following success with similar ventures in other regions, we are launching the competition to highlight the market trends, reward those who are already using a registered Beltex ram, and to encourage others to reap the rewards themselves.”