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21 January 2022
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Livestock

Listen: big prices being paid for premium stags and bulls.

Livestock Report: Venison and Velvet. 20.01.2022

Rowena Duncum from The Country talks with Tony Cochrane, National Deer and Velvet Manager for PGG Wrightson, about the big prices being paid for premium stags and bulls.

Cochrane agrees that most prices paid are up at least 10 percent on last year’s. He notes that venison prices are currently sitting around $7 a kilogram, about 30 percent higher than last year. But he cautions that this is a historical low period.

Cochrane offers a note of optimism in that Europe is starting to increase its venison consumption and the US Food Service is returning. He reiterates the importance of venison as a healthy protein and that we need to emphasise it’s healthy attributes.

Duncum asks about the high value of velvet sales, a useful counterweight to low venison prices. Do the record high prices mean the velvet market may be unstable?

Cochrane replies velvet prices have increased 25 to 30 percent this season over last season. He puts this down to people looking to boost immunity with a safe, legitimate product from New Zealand. He thinks prices for re-growth in particular are exceeding what the market can afford to pay.

At this stage growers are taking everything they can to maintain cashflow. It has had a massive effect on the positivity of stag sales.

Duncum raises the impact of the Winter Olympics in China on the venison and velvet market.

Cochrane agrees China has massive influence on many New Zealand primary exports, even though venison is not recognized as a stable part of the Chinese diet. Some new work is ongoing in China to tap into that market. Stag and bull sales have wrapped for the year with healthy prices paid across the board.

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