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THE positive news for the sheepmeat industry emanating from the China-Australia free trade agreement announced last week did little to lift prices at the Queensland Dorper and White Dorper ram and ewe sale, at the Tara showgrounds on Saturday.

But, the overriding factor was the drought according to sale chairperson Andrea Weiss who said the prevailing dry conditions had a major impact on the sale.

“We appreciated the buyers who operated and bought sheep at value-for-money prices,” Andrea said.

Guest auctioneer Allan Leech sold 10 Dorper rams for a $548 average and 26 White Dorper rams for a $596 average representing a 46 per cent clearance at the sixth annual, multi-vendor sale.

Demand for the Dorper ewes was strong with 14 ewes sold for a $434 average and five White Dorper ewes averaged $405.

Commercial lamb producers provided the bulk of the competition and mostly wanted White Dorper rams to go over Merino ewes, although the Dorper ewes met with good demand reflected by their 88 percent clearance rate.

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