By Neale McQuistin

ABP Food Group has announced an investment of £1.5 million in a unique sustainability programme which will support 350 of its farmer suppliers, and share wider learnings across the UK beef and sheep sectors.

The new programme, called PRISM 2030, will provide farmers with a support framework initially over two to three years. The aim of the programme is to help participants to improve their carbon footprint and sustainability across the entirety of the farm. The detailed programme will include assessment of carbon footprint, soil health, water use and support biodiversity creation and resource efficiency.

Dean Holroyd, group technical and sustainability director for ABP, said: “British red meat production is amongst the most sustainable in the world, but we can and must do more because, as an industry, we are well-placed to be part of the climate solution. So we want to build on this position of strength, and while PRISM will mean direct support for those in our supply base who qualify for the programme, all of the outcomes will be made available to the wider industry.”

Market round-up

Messrs Craig Wilson Ltd sold 763 prime lambs and 414 cast sheep at Newton Stewart yesterday.

Good quality prime lambs sold well but lean lambs were hard to cash. The overall average was 236p/kg (+1p) or £103 which included 239 Blackface and Mule lambs. Top prices were £151 for very heavy Suffolks and 281p for a pen of Beltex. Mule lambs peaked at £133 for a large single and 234p for a pen of 20. Blackfaces sold up to £100 and up to 237p for a pen of 51.

Cast sheep peaked at £198 for Blueface Leicester tups, while Bluefaced Leicesters also topped the ewes selling at £125. Top of the Mules was £111 with Blackfaces to £93 for a pen of 20.

C&D Auction Marts held its weekly primestock sale in Dumfries yesterday where prime cattle sold to 287p/kg for a Limousin cross heifer. Beef type OTMs sold to £1596 for a Beef Shorthorn and 193p for a Limousin, while dairy types peaked at £1185 and 157p for Holsteins. Prime lambs (980) sold on an improved trade for a show of predominantly 45kg-plus lambs selling to £141 for Texels.

There were 135 lambs (32.1kg to 39kg) that sold to £103 and 284p to average 248p, while 292 lambs (39.1kg to 45.5kg) peaked at £126 and 265p to average 245p (+4p). There were also 531 lambs (45.6kg to 52kg) that sold to £130 and 253p to average 243p (+1p). The 22 lambs weighing over 52kg peaked at £141 and 240p to average 228p (-7p).

Cast sheep (340) were a better show and a better trade this week. Lowland ewes sold to £118 for Charolais, while Blackfaces peaked at £88.