The Livestock Auctioneers’ Association (LAA) has launched a new Market Prices platform at an online introductory event. The platform is now available with live cattle, sheep and pig prices from across the livestock markets of England and Wales.
Having been live from 1 January, the launch event guided users through the new features and benefits of the system and subscription plans, while also providing technical guidance and support covering some of the queries raised by early subscribers.
The LAA has also produced a demonstration video, which runs through the key features of the platform (see below).
LAA development officer Zanna Dennis said that the video explains each of the subscription plans, helping to clarify exactly what is available to users. “This includes continued free access to daily prices for mart customers, updated daily at 12 noon. Users simply need to select the market they use and include their unique buyer/vendor code on the Daily Prices sign-up form, and free access will be enabled.”
The demonstration also confirms that every level of subscription plan, including the free of charge Weekly plan, will continue to enable users to view prices for all individual markets, equivalent to the previous system, as well as by country or region.
Ms Dennis said, “As an additional enhancement, all subscription plans include the four-way comparison tool, with users of the premium Real-Time Prices plan benefiting from the greatest level of insights with the ability to compare individual markets against others, or countries and regions.”
To give users the opportunity to evaluate the enhanced data sets and monitoring tools available through the new premium Real-Time Prices subscription plan, the LAA is offering a free, three-month trial for subscribers up until 31 March 2024.
Ms Dennis said that the platform will continue to develop, with new services and features introduced, very much based on user feedback. “We have already received a positive response, with suggestions from users on new features they would like to see in the future, and we will continue to work with our developers as the platform builds,” she said.
Crucially, buyers and vendors using LAA member livestock markets will continue to benefit from free access to the essential daily price updates.
Beef and sheep farmer Mark Townley said, “For me, the benefits of using the market prices platform is deciding when to market your lambs or your old ewes, and generally looking at the market prices, and numbers in the auctions. It is a valuable tool to me. You have to market lambs at the right time of year.”
Auctioneer Will Alexander of Bentham Auction Mart cited the need for current information, with so many variables impinging on trade. “Seven days is a massive timeframe where so much can change. It is also not a local area now, so what happens here [Bentham], can be affected by something that has happened in Devon or Cornwall, or Aberdeenshire,” he said.