June’s clean kill was well up on last year

At 771,700 head, UK clean pig slaughterings in June increased by 4% compared with the same month in 2013. This was the largest year-on-year growth in two years.

BPEX is speculating that this latest rise in throughputs suggests further productivity gains, but may also mean that some pigs were marketed a little earlier, given the good growing conditions and the falling finished pig prices of late.

The number of pigs that entered English abattoirs increased by 4%, while there was a smaller rise in Northern Irish throughputs, up by 2% on 12 months ago. Scottish slaughterings were up by 7%, the first year-on-year rise since the closure of Halls of Broxburn in October 2012.

This brought the total UK kill for the first half of the year to almost five million head, up 1% from same period in 2013.

In contrast, there was a 7% decline in the number of adult sows and boars slaughtered in June, with BPEX figures showing a total of 18,700 processed.

The six-month figures for adult pig throughput showed a tight supply situation as cull prices remained subdued; throughputs were down by 3% compared to 2013.

Finished pig carcase weights for June edged down slightly from the previous month at 80.0kg. This still meant pigs in the UK were 2% heavier in the latest month, compared with June 2013.

Consequently, pig meat production in the month totalled 64,500 tonnes, up 6% on last year. The half-year figure for pig meat production showed a 3% increase to total 418,900 tonnes.

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