Pig of a day as feed prices hit

Pig feed
Pig feed
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Thame Cattle Market was crowded with people at the small holders sale on Saturday, but not all of them were there to buy.

The pens were filled with pigs, sheep, goats, cattle and poultry but sales – particularly in the pig section – were slow.

Senior auctioneer Simon Draper believes this was due to the increase in feed prices.

He said: “The car park was full, there were people everywhere, there was no shortage of people coming to look; but they were very particular in what they wanted. They showed interest in the poultry and breeding sheep, but pig buyers were very choosey.

“The cost of animal feed is rising and that is putting people off expanding their stock numbers.

“They have to find an outlet for their pigs at the end of the day, and the cost of killing and cutting is also rising.”

Despite this, Mr Draper said reasonable prices were achieved for the better end quality pigs, with up to £450 being achieved for small Saddleback weaners.

There was satisfactory interest in the breeding sheep with a Herdwick ram lamb fetching £70, and Southdown ewes fetching over £100 each.

A small selection of Dexter cattle brought an average of £200 to £300 each.

Over 200 lots of poultry included traditional hen breeds such as Silkies, Sussex and Warrens together with more exotic breeds as well as guinea fowl, pheasants, ducks and geese.

Livestock equipment on sale included creep feeders, dog kennels and a small pony cart which sold for £150.

Staff from the market had a stand at Bucks County Show on Thursday before they got back to their normal duties with the store cattle sale at market on Friday.