RETURNS for steers have once again dashed price expectations at the Naracoote Christmas calf sale last week, with a pen of locally bred calves making the $2674 top price.
Just more than 4500 heifers were offered on Thursday last week, achieving a sale gross of $10,902,751.
In the Thomas De Garis & Clarkson 779 head strong run, Lucindale producer SA&GE Smith made the sale's top price with its run of 23 February/April 2021-drops av 414 kilograms.
The Hazeldean/Stoney Point-bloods made $2636, or $6.36 a kilogram and sold to Auctions Plus.
Vendors Steve and Glenda Smith offered the calves and TDC Penola's Darren Maney said after the family losing a substantial portion of their breeding herd during devastating fires in January, it was a "magnificent achievement."
"The family sold in December last year which was lucky. So to bounce back and top the sale this year is a great effort.
"The breeding was there and the calves finished very well - it was a great lineup."
JD&JM Skeer, Penola, was just off the pace and made $2598, or $6.34/kg, to Auctions Plus.
The February/March 2021-drop Pathfinder/Stoney Point-blood steers averaged 409kg.
Elders had the largest yarding of 2201 steers and offered WV James & Son's, Lucindale, large run of steers that topped at $2620, or $6.91.
The top pen were 24 Speckle Parks av 379kg and another pen of 24 made the same price a head, or $10.21/kg.
Nutrien Ag Solutions had a strong yarding of 1363 and knocked down 19 Sterita Park-blds av 402kg from S&R DiGiorgio & Sons, Lucindale, for $2613, or $6.30/kg.
The European Union accredited Angus steers were snapped up on Auctions Plus.
Magpie Park Family Trust, Maaoupe, made $2565, or $6.32/kg, for 21 March/April 2021-drops also to Auctions Plus.
The run of Sterita Park-blds av 406kg.
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A couple of pens with 2020-drop steers were also offered, with August/September 2020-drops the $2901, or $6.16 a kilogram, as the top price pen.
The 40 Sterita Park/Pathfinder/Texas Angus-bloods from RJ&CM Savage, Lucindale.
The steers averaged 471kg and sold to Thomas De Garis & Clarkson, Penola.
The same vendor also made $2866, or $6.06/kg, for a further 40 av 473kg that sold to Thomas Foods International.
Another pen of 43 from the Savages made $2613, or $6.16/kg,
The steers averaged 436kg and sold to TDC.
Returns for steers continued strong throughout the sale, with bidding dominated by commission buyer Andrew Lowe, NSW, who bought eight ways and secured S&R DiGiorgio & Sons 27 steers av 393kg, for $2534, or $6.45/kg.
The same vendor offered a further 31 that made $2499, $6.72/kg that went the same way.
Mr Lowe secured a further 174 steers from the vendor ranging between 344-372kg for $2332-$2499, or $6.70-$6.78/kg.
Southern Australian Livestock's run consisted of 248 head and topped at $2496, or $6.50/kg for Karana Holdings, Lucindale, 26 Pathfinder-blds av 384kg that sold to Nutrien Ag Kingston SE. A further 26 slightly lighter steers made $2444 went the same way.
Mr Lowe was again operating strongly and secured the vendor's final pen of 25 steers av 357kg, for $2320, or $6.50/kg.
Nutrien Ag Solutions Naracoorte Brendan Fitzgerald said the sale was a reflection of another incredible year to be producing cattle.
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