30 December 1999
Confusion over pig slaughter figures
THE pig industry is facing embarrassment over the latest abattoir slaughter figures, according to The Herald.
While the sector has repeatedly claimed that it is in crisis, the latest throughput figures reveal that clean pig slaughterings surged in early December
The figures also show that the pre-Christmas kill rose to within about 7% of last years exceptionally high and may have been higher than in 1995, 1996 or 1997.
That was a buoyant period when pig prices were boosted by fears BSE in beef and consumers switched to other meats such as pork and bacon.
October slaughterings were 13% on the year but a month later the shortfall was reduced to 9%. The January-November kill was less than 9% lower than 1998.
The weekly slaughter rate was back above 300,000 head early this
month, or just 6.3% less than 12 months ago.