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Author Topic: which breed for meat?  (Read 5334 times)

Young Ed

  • Joined Apr 2014
which breed for meat?
« on: April 26, 2014, 10:20:33 pm »
sorry first post here so if I don't quite post in the normal style that is why!

any way I am looking at starting a small 'flock' or 'herd' not a real one mind as it will consist of about 3 or 4 sheep to start with! plan is to buy in 3 or 4 lambs just after being weened off and then raise them up for slaughter and sell the meat, do this for a year or two and then go proper and start breeding and lambing :D to sell the lambs at market for meat

I am looking at various breeds and have seen positives and negatives of them all! I am looking mainly at Lleyn or easy care
the Lleyn as I have been working with them lambing recently and they get a good percentage fertility wise and are very friendly
the easy care as they are hardy and less susceptible to disease 
considered romney but not too keen as i believe they aren't AS good meat as various others?

not really sure why i haven't got my heart set of Lleyn apart from the hardiness of easy care
and i hear easy care have a rather variable temperament?

any thing else i should be aware of with either of these breeds? good or bad?
any other breeds i should look at/consider?
Cheers Ed

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2014, 10:45:58 pm »
Do you plan to sell the meat by the kilo or by the half lamb?  If the former, then you want a breed that has a good carcase - plenty of meat and not too much fat.  If selling by the half lamb then it needs to be superb meat, and a reason for people to buy it - so the local breed is usually popular ;)

Whereabouts are you?  In Wales near the Lleyn Peninsular, perhaps?
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Young Ed

  • Joined Apr 2014
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2014, 06:43:32 am »
Do you plan to sell the meat by the kilo or by the half lamb?  If the former, then you want a breed that has a good carcase - plenty of meat and not too much fat.  If selling by the half lamb then it needs to be superb meat, and a reason for people to buy it - so the local breed is usually popular ;)

Whereabouts are you?  In Wales near the Lleyn Peninsular, perhaps?
probably looking at selling by the half and whole pig (experience of pig keeping coming in here but no one sells a quarter lamb do they?)

no where near the origin of the Lleyn I am down in Kent, England! I would source the Lleyn lambs from the man i have been working for

Cheers Ed

Castle Farm

  • Joined Nov 2008
  • Hereford/Powys Border. near Hay-on-Wye
    • castlefarmeggs
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2014, 07:41:41 am »
You won't go far wrong if you get Lleyn. They milk like dairy cattle and lamb easy.Good strong, up on their feet lambs that grow on well.


Finish on grass without supplements.

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SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2014, 11:19:21 am »
If you've a local source and you like them, then why not.  Not the most muscley of carcases, but perfectly acceptable.  Go for it!

Otherwise, your local(ish) breeds would I guess be Southdown and Romney Marsh?  Both perfectly acceptable for eating :)

And all three breeds can have nice fleeces, if you fancied clipping them before sending them away, and selling the fleeces to handspinners ... ;)  :spin: :knit:   Romney would probably be the best for that; as a longwool, even a 6-month old lamb would have enough length of fleece to make a good spin.  Southdown and Lleyn may be a bit short still at that age - but if they're nice, and at least 2" stretched, you'd still get handspinners interested.

Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Bionic

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Talley, Carmarthenshire
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #5 on: April 27, 2014, 11:23:45 am »
I'm spinning Romney at the moment and it's lovely  :spin: :thumbsup:
Life is like a bowl of cherries, mostly yummy but some dodgy bits

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #6 on: April 27, 2014, 11:26:09 am »
I love Romney.  It's not as soft and lustrous as some longwools, but there's just something about its character, you want to comb it and spin it. :)   :spin:
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Bramblecot

  • Joined Jul 2008
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2014, 11:28:13 am »
Selling a 1/4 lamb?   I have.  You need to work out how you intend to sell the meat. 

It is easiest to sell by the half but if it is to family/friends, some of them may not want whole leg/shoulder joints and you can have them halved by the butcher.  Bear in mind that the supermarkets at Easter had their lamb joints knocked down to around £4 a kilo >:( .  If you want to sell direct, try and get yourself a little niche market and promote your meat as local/low food miles/ high welfare etc and present it nicely when you deliver.  Good luck  :thumbsup:

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2014, 02:49:59 pm »
Southdown and Portland vie for the title of breed giving the sweetest-tasting lamb.  If you're close to the South Downs National Park there's a marketing scheme spefically for SD's. 

My own experience with 20 Lleyns left me very unimpressed and with two huge bills - one for the vet and one for the knackerman!

langfauld easycare

  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #9 on: April 27, 2014, 08:19:07 pm »
 :wave: easycare and lleyn are not that different with there wool of . if you plan on selling killing lambs live you will get less for pure easycares i am afraid . they just look smaller as there is 4 - 6 inch less of wool. they still do ok but will never top the sale. but you can have pure easycare ewes and put to a more meat tup . i put some to the beltex this year look good so far .going to try a newzeland suffolk this year or perhaps a hampshire down . on the meat side i rekon the charollais takes a bit of beating . decent carcass and really sweet lamb . soay and soay mutton is great almost gamey. you can pick them up for penuts but its a far smaller carcass costs the same as a sheep double the weight to kill/ butcher .  but if you have a low buying cost might work out much same  :-\  gave my mate the leg of an 8 year old soay ewe a couple of months ago rekons was the "best lamb he ever had but a little tough"and he moans for fun . if only he knew eh :-J 
 

trish.farm

  • Joined Feb 2014
  • hampshire
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #10 on: April 27, 2014, 08:27:18 pm »
Romney lamb is seriously yummy!!  I slaughter mine at around 8 months old, grass kept all the way, loads of compliments on how tasty the lamb is.  Romney ewes are very easy lambers, never had to assist, very good mothers. 

Young Ed

  • Joined Apr 2014
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #11 on: April 27, 2014, 09:25:58 pm »
thanks all for the replies! looks like i am looking mainly at romney then as my mum knows a few knitters and spinners and enjoy such activities my self so could spin a bit at least on a spindle to sell as ready wool

how do romney and lleyn compare in how much you can charge for the meat? and size/weight of 6-8 month lamb dead and butchered?
Cheers Ed

Young Ed

  • Joined Apr 2014
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #12 on: April 27, 2014, 09:38:42 pm »
a quick google search suggests romney have a nice quiet temperament, can any one confirm this?
if so then they would appear to fit the bill nicely so long as they product plenty of meat, at least as much as a dead lleyn
Cheers Ed

trish.farm

  • Joined Feb 2014
  • hampshire
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #13 on: April 27, 2014, 10:15:30 pm »
Romneys have fab temperaments, even my ram is a pussy cat.  I have no idea what weight my lambs are at slaughter, but at around 8 months they are perfect condition for slaughter, pretty much the same size as their mums, i sell them at £130 per whole lamb butchered.  Mine dont tend to be as tall as some of my other lambs but once they are slaughter and the feet etc are chopped off the carcases are the same  :innocent:


Young Ed

  • Joined Apr 2014
Re: which breed for meat?
« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2014, 12:24:20 pm »
Romneys have fab temperaments, even my ram is a pussy cat.  I have no idea what weight my lambs are at slaughter, but at around 8 months they are perfect condition for slaughter, pretty much the same size as their mums, i sell them at £130 per whole lamb butchered.  Mine dont tend to be as tall as some of my other lambs but once they are slaughter and the feet etc are chopped off the carcases are the same  :innocent:
thanks, a great help! considering the ease of lambing the yuminess of the meat and the yield of meat and the nice wool and the pet rams! i think romney might be the one for me :D

thanks all, goes and looks up romney breeders near me
Cheers Ed

 

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