WASHINGTON – Total commercial red meat production in the United States in March was up 2percent from a year earlier and at a record high for the month, the US Dept. of Agriculture said in its latest Livestock Slaughter report.

March commercial red meat production was 4,347 million lbs., up 14 percent from February and up 2 percent from March 2010, the USDA said. January — March red meat production was 12,200 million lbs., up 2 percent from the same period of the previous year.

March beef production was 2,266 million lbs., up 12 percent from February and up 2 percent from March 2010. Cattle slaughter totaled 2.96 million head, up 2 percent from the previous year. The average live weight of cattle at slaughter was 1,276 lbs., up 3 lbs. from March 2010.

Pork production in March was 2,055 million lbs., up 16 percent from February and up 1 percent from March 2010. Commercial hog slaughter was 9.87 million head, down 2 percent from March 2010. The average live weight of slaughter hogs in March was 278 lbs., up 6 lbs. from the previous year.