Defra figures for the month of May show that the UK is producing more pig meat than it did in both the previous month and in the same month a year ago.
In total, the UK produced 88,600 tonnes of pig meat in May 2022 – 1,500 tonnes more than it did in April and 6,600 tonnes more than it did in May 2021. The number of clean pigs slaughtered also saw an increase of 5% (44,500 head) on the figures from May of last year, for a total of 957,000 head.
Therefore, total production numbers for the year to date come to 452,200 tonnes, which is a 6% increase on May 2021. The clean pig kill is only 1% more year-on-year, at 4.73 million head.
Average clean weights for May were 89.3kg, 2.7kg heavier than a year ago, and carcase weights have continued to come in heavier, although this difference is now narrowing.
AHDB suggest that it is the heavier carcase weights that can account for the current increase in production levels. While they expect clean pig throughputs to fall away later in the summer, alongside production, but by how much will depend upon the contraction in the sow herd.