This year's prime lamb with prime lamb chief steward Jim Mitchell and judge Matty Thompson.
This year's prime lamb with prime lamb chief steward Jim Mitchell and judge Matty Thompson. Amy Kadel

A poor season, but lambs still in prime at show

A POOR season for lamb farmers barely affected the prime lamb competition at the annual Stanthorpe Agricultural Society Show.

While the number of entries was on the low side this year, Judge Matty Thompson said entries were strong considering.

"It was a good line-up of good fresh succulent lambs, considering the season," Mr Thompson said.

"Things have changed in the last couple of months; they've come a long way."

There are atotal of 39 lambs with 13 pens of three lambs.

The low number was due in part to the poor season due to the lack of rain falling in the region up until November, leaving animals without feed.

Farmers selling their livestock earlier than normal also impacted the number of entries.

"It's a bit smaller on numbers due to the season but the other side of it too is because of the high lamb prices and also high cattle prices a lot of people had sold lambs and steers," Mr Thompson said.

"Normally a lot of these pens would be chokers, and yeah, it's a bit smaller this year."

The competition was judged on the prime pen of lambs with champion and reserve pens.

"The champion pen of prime lambs, they were very even, beautiful lambs," Mr Thompson said.

The champion single lamb was chosen from one of those classes.

The champion single lamb was picked due to being the prime candidate.

"The reason that I picked it as the single, as the best lamb in the shed, it's not the biggest lamb but it's probably the most structurally correct lamb in the shed," he said.

"Exactly what you're looking for; the legs were right, the shape's right, the head's right, nice and soft, good growth in the hips.

"Very well finished lamb but could still carry a god 10 to 20 kilos on that without a problem."

"It weighed in at 43, which is ideal for the local trade, local butcher trade," prime lamb chief steward Jim Mitchell said.

The lambs were purchased by Gross Meats Warwick after the competition, who offered a price on the lambs, leaving Mr Mitchell to accept or deny.

The prime lamb carcass was also announced on the day.

Graham Greenup was awarded first and second place in the competition.

Judges looked at fat coverage and fleshing.

Entries in this category were also down this year.