OVER the last few weeks we have seen the final autumn season sales for pedigree cattle and we are now turning our work schedules to the annual in-lamb sales which take place during the next couple of months and into the beginning of January, writes Heather Pritchard of H&H for Farmer.

Some of the highlights from the latest beef sales include a Whitebred Shorthorn heifer and calf outfit which sold for 3600gns. In the Galloway section the top price of 2800gns for a Galloway in-calf heifer.

Looking at the schedule of in-lamb sales coming up include the Zwartbles Society Sale of 140 head, also the noted Breeder sales of Suffolk, namely 3-Nations and Dark Diamonds. The entries in these last two sales carry a wealth of genetics which attracts a strong overseas interest from both sides of Ireland along with many breeders from Belgium. With the present restrictions of customers not being able to travel, this is where our increasingly popular live stream bidding facility is proving huge helping hand.

Other in-lamb sheep society sales we can look forward to include - Beltex, Blue Texel, Dutch Spotted, Badgerface Texel, along with Texels and the ever popular Texel breeders sales of Friday Night Lights, Christmas Stars and Kelso Crackers. In all there will be in the region of 2000 head coming under the hammer.

In recent weeks the dairy sales have been happening thick and fast. We have seen some outstanding quality cattle come through the sale rings and trade continues to hold form with the demand for numbers not letting up. Our message to producers, is to keeping them coming through the sale ring as the buyers’ demand is still true to form.

Our monthly Machinery sales still continue to draw batches of field and yard items to be sold through the Online Bidding system. This facility has been a huge saviour for many households, and although people are not attending the sale yard, in person, they are now in the mind set of interacting with a virtual bidding system. This interaction is, in a small way to helping farmers feel they have had a day out at the auction.

With England remaining in a lockdown at present the LAA (Livestock Auctioneers Association) have been banging the drum for our auction markets to remain open. They were delighted to inform all centres that we can continue, as the markets are acknowledged as ‘essential and critical’ businesses in the food supply chain. So let us all work together to keep the auctions marts going and remember of follow the guidelines.

One final item I have to mention is the first H&H free live & interactive online webinar titled 'Fit for the Future' to take place on Tuesday, December 1. The panel of six speakers includes three members of the H&H staff from across the Group. From the farmstock business, Scott Donaldson will be speaking about Brexit around topics - potential pitfalls of a No Deal; potential impact on commercial livestock farmers, and potential difficulties which we may need to consider with the trading and export of pedigree livestock.