Pig throughputs down again in February

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UK clean pig slaughterings in February were 12% lower than the same month in 2016, at 769 thousand head, according to latest figures from Defra. 

This continues the trend seen over the past few months of a fall in throughput year on year. This is partly due to an assumed contraction in the UK breeding herd, which happened last year. 

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Once the figures were adjusted to account for the extra working day in February 2016, overall slaughterings were still down by 9%, while sow slaughterings recorded a decrease of 18% year on year at just under 18 thousand head. Similar to clean pig slaughterings, the trend in sow slaughterings follows the downward trend seen over the past months.

In February, carcase weights were marginally higher (400g) on the year at 83.9kg/head. Furthermore, due to the reduction in throughput and only a slight increase in carcase weights, pigmeat production in February fell by 9% on the year at 67 thousand tonnes.

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Millie Askew, Analyst

millie.askew@ahdb.org.uk, 024 7647 8968