About Us


Originally known as the German Mutton Merino, the first 10 ewes and 1 ram were imported to South Africa from Germany in 1932 for an Agricultural Department breeding program.

The newly named South African Mutton Merino (SAMM) was recognized in 1971 after decades of breeding for better wool quality and conformation. The SAMM was developed as a dual purpose sheep and was originally bred for its adaptability to the South African environment. It was later further developed to produce a heavy slaughter lamb at a young age as well as good quality wool.

The SAMM has been used as a sire line in four other South African breeds, including the Dohne Merino and Afrino, both of which are currently bred in Australia.

The breed was first introduced into Australia in 1996. In 1999 Australian breeders voted to adopt the Prime SAMM name after initially giving the breed the title of South African Meat Merino when it was first introduced.


Characteristics of the Prime SAMM breed include:

  • Adaptability and Hardiness

  • Excellent Dual Purpose Breed

  • Highly Fertile

  • Good Mothering Qualities

  • Non-Selective Grazer Utilizing Low Quality Roughage

  • No Mulesing

Breed Standards

A list of breed standards has been compiled by the Prime SAMM Breeders Society of Australia.