Livestock Slaughter: Record Commercial Red Meat Production

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Commercial red meat production for the United States totaled 4.28 billion pounds in March, up 3 percent from the 4.14 billion pounds produced in March 2009.

Beef production, at 2.21 billion pounds, was 3 percent above the previous year. Cattle slaughter totaled 2.91 million head, up 7 percent from March 2009. The average live weight was down 32 pounds from the previous year, at 1,273 pounds.

Veal production totaled 12.2 million pounds, slightly below March a year ago. Calf slaughter totaled 79,800 head, up slightly from March 2009. The average live weight was down 4 pounds from last year, at 259 pounds.

Pork production totaled 2.04 billion pounds, up 4 percent from the previous year. Hog kill totaled 10.03 million head, up 4 percent from March 2009. The average live weight was unchanged from the previous year, at 272 pounds.

Lamb and mutton production, at 17.6 million pounds, was up 11 percent from March 2009. Sheep slaughter totaled 262,300 head, 18 percent above last year. The average live weight was 135 pounds, down 8 pounds from March a year ago.

January to March 2010 commercial red meat production was 11.9 billion pounds, down 2 percent from 2009. Accumulated beef production was up slightly from last year, veal was down 2 percent, pork was down 4 percent from last year, and lamb and mutton production was up 2 percent.

Source: NASS/USDA


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