The year-on-year decline in UK pork production continued through September, on the back of reduced pig numbers coming through the system.
Defra’s latest monthly slaughter statistics show September UK clean pig slaughterings were down 11% on September 2022 at 780,000 head, with pigmeat production 10.2%,73,000 tonnes, down, continuing recent monthly trends.
The pig slaughter figure for September was down from 875,000 in August and 878,000 in September 2022, once again highlighting the impact of the decline of the UK breeding herd in 2022. The 11% decline in September follows year-on-year deficits of 6% and 15% in July.
In terms of the weekly average, the figure of 182,000 for September was down from the August weekly average of 198,000 and the September 2022 figure of 205,000, a 12.6% year-on-year decline.
Average carcase weights are on the rise, however. The September UK average of 89.7kg was up from the August figure of 89.3kg and the September 2022 figure of 88.3kg. As result, the 10.2% year-on-year drop in production is slightly lower than the fall in slaughter numbers.
Slaughterings have increased in August, according to AHDB’s estimated GB slaughterings, which, for the week ended October 7, were up nearly 13,000 on the previous week at 169,302, albeit still 19,000 below the same week in 2022. Average carcase weights in the SPP sample topped 90kg for the first time this year, rising by 0.7kg to 90.31kg.