Beef and lamb: what do I get for my levy? – Weekly prices, and reports on production, trade and demand

Read on to find out more about auction market and deadweight prices, the information that is available, and how it is produced.

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Published for over 100 individual auction markets, the latest prices and throughputs for finished sales are produced twice each day, and on a weekly basis, as well as being updated hourly.  

Store cattle and sheep sales are reported regionally on a weekly basis alongside dairy cattle and rearing calves.  

We also publish GB deadweight sheep and cattle prices on a weekly basis. Our deadweight prices cover approximately 90% of all cattle and 45% of clean sheep slaughtered deadweight. 


As well as our price information, we provide regular reports that are relied upon by producers, processors, and industry alike. We lead and provide the industry with in-depth analysis of market trends. This involves collating a range of third-party information relating to domestic and international prices, production, supply, demand and trade, as well as data relating to farm expenses.  

This past year, we have covered a range of topics from production forecasts, balance sheet estimates and sector analysis to the impact of coronavirus on markets. All of our analyses can be found on ourbeef market analysis and lamb market analysis pages. 

Why do we do it? 

The auction market and deadweight prices are an independent and impartial industry benchmark as well as an indicator of long-term price trends. The deadweight price surveys also allow us to publish GB weekly slaughter estimates which are an important independent source of information on the supply of cattle and sheep. 

How is it used? 

From a producer and processor point of view, the prices are used to look at the overall trend in cattle and sheep prices from one week to the nextThe auction market prices are also used as the basis for bovine TB compensation payments in EnglandFurther information is available on the TB Hub in our factsheet 

In addition, both price series are used by the farming press, other government bodies and members of the supply chain, as well as a range of industry stakeholder such as  the NFU and others to inform lobbying and government.  

What is the impact? 

Market information is accessed more than 140,000 times per month, while our Cattle and Sheep Weekly readership has been rising by more than 50% a year, currently reaching some 3,000 subscribers every week. Without the prices, the industry would lose one if its critical sources of independent price and production information. 

Supporting your business through the impact of coronavirus 

During critical times, such as the coronavirus pandemic, we’ve made sure that you’ve continued to have the latest information as markets changed rapidly. We provided evidence on the evolving coronavirus impact to help make sense of unprecedented shifts in purchasing patterns. 

How did we do this? 

  • During the first lockdown, we provided weekly updates on spending on beef and lamb at retail and food service 
  • By providing bespoke and in-depth reports including our recent work looking at how the pandemic affected the beef and lamb market 

How will government policies impact beef and lamb 

The policy and economics team works across all sectors, including beef and lamb, to develop insight into the changing policy environment. The team looks at domestic policy as well as developments in the trading landscape and how this might affect farmers. 

We produce regular articles as well as longer report-style work, under the AHDB horizon banner, which looks in-depth at the policy and trade issue facing levy payers. We delved into the specific issues such as the impact of the Sustainable Farming Incentive or opportunities for the sheep sector. More information is available in the trade and policy area of the website.

Email a question on EU Exit to our policy team

Understanding the consumer 

We want the UK food supply chain, from farm to fork, to understand the needs of modern food consumers. It is important to remember that their attitudes toward cooking, buying and eating are major considerations for the whole supply chain. 

This means that we understand that farmers, growers, retailers and processors need to be as well-informed about consumer behaviours and retail trends as possible. That way, we can create a world-class domestic and export food industry. 

We invest your levy in detailed retail and food service data, while our own team of experts analyse this and other emerging trends to provide you with the information you need. 

Useful links

Beef and lamb: what do I get for my levy? – Export development

Beef and lamb: what do I get for my levy? – Marketing to the UK consumer

Beef and lamb: what do I get for my levy? – Animal health, genetics, and the environment

Beef and lamb: what do I get for my levy? – Working with our levy payers

Livestock Information Programme