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Beef Production Surges as Slaughter Increases

14 July 2014
Meat & Livestock Australia

AUSTRALIA - During May, Australian beef and veal production reached a monthly record volume of 231,690 tonnes cwt – up four per cent year-on-year and 17 per cent above the five-year average.

Boosted by drought-induced slaughter levels registered within the past twelve months, the volume from July 2013 to May 2013 increased 10 per cent on the previous year, to total 2.26 million tonnes cwt (Australian Bureau of Statistics).

Meat and Livestock Australia said that Victoria was the only state to register a greater level than May 2013, up 26 per cent to 44,639 tonnes cwt, while Queensland and SA remained steady year-on-year, at 113,405 tonnes cwt and 11,023 tonnes cwt, respectively. Production across NSW and WA both declined two per cent on the corresponding month last year, at 48,520 tonnes cwt and 8,385 tonnes cwt, respectively, while Tasmania registered a seven per cent reduction on last year, to 5,715 tonnes cwt.

May saw total Australian adult cattle slaughter continue to rise, up four per cent on last year’s level, to 827,454 head – the highest monthly volume since March 1979 (890,744 head), with the current fiscal year-to-May total increasing 12 per cent on the previous year, to 8 million head.

Average adult cattle carcase weights during May were steady with last year, at 275.53kg/head, yet declined one per cent on the five-year average.

The bulk of adult slaughter continues to be female, with numbers up eight per cent year-on-year, to 430,687 head.

Queensland female kill (189,965 head) increased nine per cent, while numbers in Victoria (104,850 head) were 23 per cent higher over the same period.

On the other hand, total national male slaughter was one per cent lower than a year ago, at 396,767 head.

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