WASHINGTON — For the month of September, poultry certified wholesome (ready-to-cook weight) totaled 3.58 billion lbs., down 4% from the amount certified in September 2008, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, Agricultural Statistics Board, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The revised certified total for August 2009, which was at 3.53 billion lbs., decreased 3% from August 2008. The August revision represented an increase of 5.49 million lbs. from last month's preliminary pounds certified.

The preliminary total live weight of poultry inspected during September was 4.77 billion lbs., down 4% from 4.98 billion lbs. in September 2008. Young chickens inspected totaled 4.10 billion lbs., down 3% from September 2008. At 67.8 million lbs., mature chickens were down 12% from the previous year.

Turkey inspections totaled 587 million lbs., a decrease of 9% from a year ago. Ducks totaled 13.1 million lbs., down 6% from last year.

During September, young chickens slaughtered averaged 5.62 lbs. per bird, unchanged from September 2008. The average live weight of mature chickens was 5.71 lbs. per bird, down 4% from a year ago. Turkeys slaughtered during September averaged 28.6 lbs. per bird, up slightly from September 2008.

Ante-mortem condemnations during September totaled 10.9 million lbs. Condemnations were 0.23% of the live weight inspected, as compared with 0.28% a year earlier. Post-mortem condemnations, at 34.9 million lbs., were 0.97% of quantities inspected as compared with 1.08% a year earlier.