Thursday, 14 April 2022
UK pig meat production was 101,600 tonnes in March, according to data from Defra. This is 5% more than in the same month last year, and 14% more than in February. In the year to date 276,000 tonnes of pig meat has been produced, 6% more than at the same point a year ago.
At 1.06 million head, a similar number of clean pigs were slaughtered in the month as in March 2021, and so the increase in production is almost entirely attributable to heavier carcase weights.
The average weight was 92.5kg in March, which although 1.4kg lighter than in February, was still over 4kg heavier than a year ago. This indicates that while there has been some improvement in the backlog, there is still some way to go. Indeed, reports suggest that some farms are still as backlogged as they have ever been.
In the year to date, 2.85 million clean pigs have been killed in UK abattoirs, 1% more than at the same point in 2021. This is to be expected, as although there has been a significant decline in the number of breeding sows, the sector is still working its way through the backlog, supporting throughputs. In the second half of the year the number of clean pigs available to kill is expected to be materially lower year-on-year.
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