New data reveals rising beef calf numbers
New figures released by the British Cattle Movement Service (BCMS) suggests that the number of beef calves registered in Wales in the first five months of 2020 is the highest it’s been for several years.
According to the figures, there has been an overall rise of 1.2% in calves registered between January and May 2020 across Britain, compared to the same period last year. In Wales, the figure is higher with an increase of 3.1%.
According to analysis by Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC) the statistics reflect a range of factors, including a trend of producing more cross-bred calves from the dairy herd.
Some of the beef breeds and crossbreeds showing the biggest increases in terms of calf registrations in Wales include the Aberdeen Angus (up 11.7%) and Hereford (up 4.8%), whilst both Charolais and British Blue registrations are up just over 4%.
HCC market analyst, Glesni Phillips, said: “These figures could show a positive sign for the future of the beef industry in Wales, and reflect broader trends in both the beef and dairy sectors.
“This comes despite the beef sector being hit by uncertainty in recent times. A combination of market conditions led to low farm-gate prices last year, and demand fluctuated widely in the early stages of the coronavirus lockdown as pubs and restaurants closed their doors.
“However, we’ve seen encouraging consumption figures throughout Britain in the second half of the spring, with great support from consumers for home-produced beef, with its high standards of welfare and environmental sustainability.”