Total red meat production for the U.S. totaled 47.4 billion pounds in 2014, 4% lower than the previous year, according to the 2014 Livestock Slaughter Summary report issued April 27 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS).
Red meat production in commercial plants totaled 47.3 billion pounds. On-farm slaughter totaled 93.4 million pounds.
Beef production totaled 24.3 billion pounds, down 6% from the previous year. Veal production totaled 100 million pounds, down 15% from last year. Pork production, at 22.9 billion pounds, was down 1% from the previous year. Lamb and mutton production totaled 161 million pounds, down slightly from 2013.
Commercial cattle slaughter during 2014 totaled 30.2 million head, down 7% from 2013, with federal inspection comprising 98.4% of the total. The average live weight was 1,330 lb., up 16 lb. from a year ago. Steers comprised 51.8% of the total federally inspected cattle slaughter, heifers 28.2%, dairy cows 9.5%, other cows 8.6% and bulls 1.8%.
Commercial calf slaughter totaled 565,800 head, 26% lower than a year ago with 98.5% under federal inspection. The average live weight was 283 lb., up 33 lb. from a year earlier.
Commercial hog slaughter totaled 106.9 million head, 5% lower than 2013 with 99.3% of the hogs slaughtered under federal inspection. The average live weight was up 9 lb. from last year, at 285 lb. Barrows and gilts comprised 97.1% of the total federally inspected hog slaughter.
Commercial sheep and lamb slaughter, at 2.31 million head, was down slightly from the previous year with 91.1% by federal inspection. The average live weight was unchanged from 2013 at 135 lb. Lambs and yearlings comprised 93.5% of the total federally inspected sheep slaughter.
There were 881 plants slaughtering under federal inspection on Jan. 1, 2015, compared with 862 last year. Of these, 654 plants slaughtered at least one head of cattle during 2014 with the 13 largest plants slaughtering 56% of the total cattle killed. Hogs were slaughtered at 620 plants, with the 12 largest plants accounting for 57% of the total. Likewise, 5 of the 200 plants that slaughtered calves accounted for 63% of the total and 3 of the 521 plants that slaughtered sheep or lambs in 2014 comprised 56% of the total head.
Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska and Texas accounted for 49% of the U.S. commercial red meat production in 2014, unchanged from 2013, reported NASS.