Prime cattle slaughter in the United Kingdom totalled 1.93 mill. head in 2013, down 2% year-on-year.
According to Eblex - the organisation for the English beef and sheep industry - it is likely that this is the lowest in approximately 65 years, as the UK cattle herd is at its lowest point since 1948.
The decline in 2013 was underpinned by fewer steers slaughtered, down 5% year-on-year, despite an increase in heifer and young bull slaughter, up 1% and 3% respectively. Average carcase weights also dropped, with both steer and young bulls down 2% year-on-year, at 360.6 kg and 338.8 kg per head. UK adult cattle slaughter totalled 608,000 head in 2013, a decrease of 5% year-on-year.
The decline on cattle slaughtered in 2013 combined with the lower carcase weights underpinned UK beef production to decreasing 4pc year-on-year, to 843,500 t cwt.