Commercial red-meat production from January to September was 35.1 billion lbs., down 4 percent from the comparable year-ago period, USDA said. Accumulated beef production eased 6 percent, veal declined 13 percent, pork was down 1 percent and lamb and mutton production saw a slight decline.
Beef production declined slightly to 2.07 billion lbs. Cattle slaughter slipped 3 percent to 2.53 billion head. Average live weights jumped 31 lbs. higher compared to a year ago when the average live weight was 1,344 lbs., USDA reported.
Pork production totaled 1.87 billion lbs., a 2 percent increase from a year ago. Hog slaughter declined 2 percent to 8.83 million head compared to September 2013.The average live weight increased 57 lbs. from last year's figure of 291 lbs.
Lamb and mutton production climbed higher in September, according to USDA data. Production totaled 12.3 million lbs., up 5 percent from a year ago. Sheep slaughter totaled 191,900 head, a 4 percent increase above September 2013. The average live weight was 128 lbs., 2 lbs. heavier compared to September a year ago.
Veal production dropped 16 percent to 7.2 billion lbs., USDA reported. Calf slaughter totaled 42,300 head, down 33 percent from a year ago. The average live weight of calves slaughtered was up 57 lbs. from last year when live weights were at 291 lbs.