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Consumption volume of red meat in the United Kingdom (UK) 2017, by type

In 2017, Pig meat was the most consumed red meat in the UK at approximately 1.7 million tons, followed by beef and veal at around 1.2 million tons. In comparison, lamb meat consumed totaled around 300 thousand tons. Lamb meat has always struggled with maintaining a consistent consumption quality. For the planets climate this is probably a lucky coincidence, since dishes, such as the Welsh Cawl, containing sheep meat have an extremely high carbon footprint.

A question of price?

For pork and beef manufactured in the UK we can see an interesting price development. In the five years between 2013 and 2017, per kilogram prices for pig meat, salted, in brine, dried, or smoked and meat or offal of beef and veal manufactured in the UK were closely matched. However, retail prices of beef have consistently been higher than those of pork and can likely explain the differences in consumption volume seen above.

Waiting for the shift

Sales values achieved with beef are much higher than for other red meat types. While there is a shift towards flexitarianism and meatless lifestyles, these changes had not made a huge impact on revenues made with vegetarian products by 2016.

Consumption volume of red meat in the United Kingdom (UK) in 2017, by type*

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Release date

October 2018


United Kingdom

Survey time period


Supplementary notes

* Total supplies of meat available for consumption, both in and outside the home. Includes imported meat products; provisional results.

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