Uk beef production eases in September - AHDB

73,400 tonnes of beef, veal was produced in September
calendar icon 24 October 2022
clock icon 1 minute read


Defra’s latest production figures indicate that 73,400 tonnes of beef and veal was produced in September, according to a report from AHDB analyst Charlotte Forkes-Rees. While slightly lower than in August (-1.3%), tonnage remains in line with September last year (+0.5%). Year to date (Jan-Sept), production of beef and veal totalled 665,200 tonnes, only marginally down on the same period last year.

A total of 160,600 prime cattle were slaughtered during September, while cow slaughter totalled 59,700 head. Compared to September 2021, prime cattle slaughter is up 1% (1,500 head) while cow throughput was up 6% (3,500 head). Year to date, prime cattle slaughter numbers are near those reached last year, while cow slaughter numbers are up 3%. Despite the increases, total slaughter numbers remain below pre-pandemic levels and the 5-year average.

A slight easing of carcases weights for both prime cattle and cows in September has offset the higher slaughter figures, keeping total production relatively flat. Prime cattle carcases averaged 341kg in the month, back 1.7kg on August, and 4.3kg down on September last year. Average cow weights also eased, back 5.5kg (1.8%) on the previous month, and 6.1kg (2%) on September last year. Carcase weights have been generally lower this year, perhaps reflecting the impact of high feed costs on both length of time on farm and finished weight.

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