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Benchmarked wethers sell for a premium

WoolPoll Levy
Bethungra woolgrower Eric McKenzie has used benchmarking to add value to his sale lambs.

11th April 2012

A win in Australia’s biggest Merino evaluation trial for a Pooginook blood flock paid off with progeny hitting $111 on AuctionsPlus.

Eric McKenzie, “Grasmere”, Bethungra, NSW, has been using Pooginook rams for the past 15 years.

On December 19, Mr McKenzie sold a line of 678 July-August 2011 drop unshorn wether lambs, Pooginook blood, for $111/head.

Averaging 35kg liveweight, the lambs drew three bidding woolgrowers and sold at a $10-$15 a head premium over similar description wethers at recent store sales. The sale was backed up by Mr McKenzie’s win in Australia’s biggest Merino trial for wool and carcass, the Peter Westblade Memorial Merino Challenge.

Eric and wife Dianne placed first in the dollars per hectare value and wool price (based on the five year average) at the first shearing in the 2010-2012 Merino challenge. The couple took out the final shearing in March with a total sheep value (wool and carcass) of $44.85.

Mr McKenzie said he was a keen supporter of both physical, virtual and over-the-hooks selling.

Pooginook business manager John Sutherland said benchmarked sheep were selling well in a revitalised wool market.


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