Journal of the Department of Agriculture, Western Australia, Series 4


T Marshall


Sheep, Sheepmeat, Meat production, Exports, Economic analysis, Western Australia

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In the past the proportion of mated ewes in Western Australia's sheep flocks carried through summer has averaged about 40 per cent and sheep meat production has been basically lamb and old mutton.

If the proportion of mated ewes was lifted to an average of around 50 per cent and wethers were sold off at an average of about 2 1\ 2 years old, there would be substantial increases in sheep meat production. The extra meat produced would be young sheep meat ideally suited for table meats for consumers in W.A. and in many overseas countries.

As a result of increasing the proportion of mated ewes, wool production would probably decline slightly but the decrease in wool income would nearly always be more than offset by increases in income from meat production. Changes in labour requirements as a result of running more breeding ewes would be small.