UK/EU Pig Statistics - April 2009

This article provides a summary of the latest statistics relating to pigs in the UK and Europe by ThePigSite editor, Jackie Linden. The data are published quarterly by the UK Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), and include slaughter figures, carcass weights, pig meat production and trade.
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The latest data in the current quarterly report from DEFRA provides figures for the UK for March 2009 and for December 2008 for the EU.


UK slaughterings of clean pigs in March 2009 was 695,300 – down 3,700 or 0.5 per cent from the same month in 2008. The provisional total for 2008 was 9,191,800, which is 0.9 per cent below the figure for 2007.

UK slaughterings for sows and boars in March 2009 was 16,200, which compares with 20,900 in March 2008. The provisional total for 2008 was 235,000: in 2007, the total was 209,900.

The latest month for which data is available for EU pig slaughterings is December 2008, when the total for all 27 Member States came to 23.496 million. This brought the total number of pigs slaughtered in the EU-27 for the year to 255.030 million.

UK Carcass Weights

The average UK-killed and dressed carcass weight in March 2009 was 77.8 kg, continuing a slow upward trend. The average for 2008 was 76.6 kg.

The average dressed carcass weight for UK-killed sows and boars was 147.3 kg, a little below the 151.3 kg average for 2008.

UK Pig Meat Production

Total pig meat production in the UK in March 2009 was 56,000 tonnes, of which 48,000 tonnes was pork and 8,000 tonnes was bacon and ham.

These figures bring the totals for the first quarter of 2009 to 176,000, 150,000 and 26,000 tonnes, respectively.

UK Home-Cured Bacon and Ham Production

For the first quarter of this year, total home-cured ham and bacon production amounted to 43,000 tonnes. Of this 23,000 tonnes (53 per cent) was produced from pigs slaughtered in the UK, and the rest from imported pig meat. This continues a generally downward trend in the proportion of UK-reared pigs for cured meat production in the UK.

UK Trade in Pork, Bacon and Ham

The latest data available for UK trade in pig meat is for December 2008, when 27,600 tonnes of pork was imported into the country – 26,700 tonnes from other EU countries and 900 tonnes for third parties.

In the same month, 11,000 tonnes of pork was exported from the UK – 8,200 to the EU and 2,800 to other countries.

All bacon and ham trade in the same month was with other EU countries: 29,600 tonnes were imported and 2,700 tonnes exported.

Further Reading

- You can view the full report by clicking here.

Further Reading

- You can view information on the pig population in the UK and the EU by clicking here.

April 2009
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