July red-meat production lower than year-earlier totals

by Bryan Salvage
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WASHINGTON — Commercial U.S. red meat production in July totaled 4.12 billion lbs., down 3% from the 4.25 billion lbs. produced in July 2008, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, Agricultural Statistics Board, U.S. Department of Agriculture. July 2008 contained 23 weekdays (including one holiday) and four Saturdays while July 2009 contained 23 weekdays (including one holiday) and four Saturdays.

Totaling 2.27 billion lbs., beef production registered 4% below the previous year’s total. Cattle slaughter totaled 2.92 million head, down 5% from July 2008. The average live weight was up 9 lbs. from the previous year, at 1,282 lbs.

Veal production was 12% below July 2008, totaling 10.8 million lbs. Calf slaughter totaled 79,900 head, down 9% from the same month last year. The average live weight, at 230 lbs, was down 13 lbs. from July 2008.

Pork production totaled 1.83 billion lbs. and was down 1% from July 2008. Hog kill totaled 9.15 million head, down 3% from July 2008. The average live weight, at 267 lbs., was up 5 lbs. from July last year.

Lamb and mutton production was up 2% from July 2008, totaling 13.9 million lbs. Sheep slaughter totaled 207,400 head, a little above last year’s total. The average live weight was 135 lbs., up 3 lbs. from July 2008.

Commercial red meat production totaled 28.4 billion lbs. from January to July 2009, down 3% from 2008, while accumulated beef production was down 3%, veal was down 3%, pork was down 3% and lamb and mutton production was down 4%.

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