More lambs forward supports August production

Friday, 16 September 2022

The latest Defra figures show that 22,700 tonnes of sheep meat were produced during August, up 2% from July, but down 1% compared to August 2021.

Clean sheep slaughter rose 2% from July to 1.01 million head for the month, marginally more (0.4%) than August 2021. Adult sheep kill totalled 111,000 head, up 11% from July and up 1% from August a year ago.

Graph showing monthly UK clean sheep slaughter to Aug-22

Clean sheep carcases averaged 19.7kg during August, 1% heavier than July, but broadly similar to year-ago levels.

For the year-to-date (Jan-Aug inclusive) UK sheep meat production stood at 177,800 tonnes, up 6% compared to the same period a year ago. While average carcase weights so far this year have seen a marginal uptick, the growth in sheep meat production is primarily down to higher kill.

Graph showing year-to-date (Jan-Aug) UK sheep meat production and kill

Clean sheep kill reached 7.6 million head, 5% ahead of the number recorded during the same period in 2021. Adult sheep kill stood at 789,800 head, up 6% year-on-year. It is worth pointing out that reported figures for 2021 clean and adult sheep kill are still suspected to be on the low side, something we continue to monitor.

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