The cumulative beef kill so far in 2014 is some 11% higher than over the same period last year. This is according to figures from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, which were released today.

The figures show that some 406,410 head of cattle have been slaughtered up approximately 41,000 on 2013. Continuing the trend since the turn of the year last weeks the beef kill was again much higher than the corresponding week in 2013. The Departments figures show throughput at factories was some 27% higher last week bring the beef kill to 32,415 in total for the week ending 28 of March.

The steer kill was particularly high last week and this has been a reoccurring trend over the past three months. Steer throughput at factories was 10,573 last week up a significant 22% on the same week last year. Since the start of the year over 120,000 steers have been slaughtered up 10% on the same period in 2014.

The heifer kill was also high last week at some 8,913 head up 32% on the same week last year. A high cow kill has also been a feature of the opening months in 2014. Last week 6,600 cows were killed this represents a 14% increase on the corresponding week in 2013. Cumulatively the cow kill is at this stage up some 12% on the same period last year.

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Northern Ireland
According to the Livestock and Meat Commission last week the NI cattle kill was at its lowest level so far this year. The plants killed a total of 7,100 head. This was 1,600 fewer than the previous week, an 18 per cent decline. The prime cattle kill was down by 1,100 head last week (-16%), with the majority of that decline being the heifer and young bull kill. The cow kill was down by 20 per cent week on week.

It noted also last week, that NI factories imported 448 cattle from the south for direct slaughter. Meanwhile 64 cattle, mainly cows, were exported in the opposite direction. Almost 240 cattle were exported from Northern Ireland to GB for direct slaughter.