Extreme weather suspends southwest cattle sales
PRIME cattle sale days in Roma have been temporarily suspended, off the back of waning numbers coming through the yards.
The Roma Livestock Agents Association has advised numbers at the fortnightly Thursday sale have dropped to a point where holding a prime sale in its own right is unviable, at least in the short term.
Association president Andrew Holt told The Western Star the double blow of prolonged drought and recent flooding has taken its toll.
"(Suspending the Thursday prime sales) was a decision made by the Roma Livestock Agents Association, on the basis that we have been experiencing reduced prime numbers throughout much of last year," he said.
"Numbers have been heavily impacted by the dry, and more recently the significant widespread rain has further impacted our prime cattle numbers.
"The rain has enabled those who have cattle left to hold on to them, and put some weight on them, with the intention of selling at a later date.
"At this point in time, our decision is in the best interest of our clients, and all of the stakeholders involved in the Roma prime sales, purely because the smaller yardages meant the prime sale wasn't viable to hold in its own right."
Instead, the agents will be selling prime cattle on Tuesdays alongside the regular store sale.
Mr Holt said the practice has already been put in to place, with many agents already selling the fat cattle on Store Sale days.
"We expect there will be no impact to the competition on our clients' cattle, as all the processes operate at the regular Roma store sale, and have done so for many years," he said.
The RLAA is expected to review the prime sale suspension in May, and make a decision of the Thursday prime sale's long-term future.