MLA Australian sheep industry projections 2012 - mid-season update


MLA's Australian sheep industry projections - mid season update provides a comprehensive outlook on the sheep industry including forecasts for the national flock, sheep and lamb supply and exports over a five year horizon.

Published in February 2012, the projections include forecasts for:

  • A combination of all-time high lamb prices in 2011, favourable seasons and strong global demand will drive producer optimism in 2012. Consecutive good seasons in the eastern states and drought breaking rain in WA will see the Australian sheep flock continue its early steps toward rejuvenation in 2012.

  • Lamb supplies will increase in 2012; therefore prices are expected to be lower than the record levels reached in 2011. However continued strong demand, particularly from export markets, should see good producer returns continue.

  • Lamb exports now generate a much higher proportion of income than in previous years, with a record 48.5% of total lamb production sent off shore in 2011. The Middle East was the largest export market with 34,893 tonnes swt (22%), followed by the US, 21%, and the growing Greater China, 18%. These markets are expected to continue to grow, with the US starting to recover in 2012.
  • Live sheep exports are assumed to stabilise after 2011’s decline, in terms of numbers shipped, as more ewes and wethers become available to the trade, particularly later in the year.

  • Mutton exports are also forecast to increase after a decline in 2011, which was due mainly to restricted supply. Strong demand in the Middle East is expected to continue, with over 41,000 tonnes forecast to be shipped to the market in 2012.

Read the full 2012 industry projections mid-season update

Download the 2012 industry projections mid-season update

Download as a  pdf

Read the MLA media release

Read the media release


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