Poultry industry in the United Kingdom

With the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union, concerns have arisen over chlorinated chicken imports from the United States. Questions are being raised about what the future standards will be for the poultry industry in the UK. Another big question facing the industry are government plans for the immigration reform, since more than half of the industry’s workforce are from other EU states.

All these questions are of major relevance to the more than 3,000 companies working on raising poultry in the UK. In 2018, almost 190 million animals could be found on possibly impacted agricultural holdings in the UK. More than half of these animals were being raised for later consumption. The birds which become broiler chickens only take a few weeks to raise before they are up for slaughter. Therefore, the number of slaughtered animals in any given year is vastly greater than the number of animals currently found on UK farms.

In 2018, the UK production value of poultry and poultry meat was over 2.6 billion British pounds. This translated to an output of 1.94 million metric tons that year. The overwhelming majority of slaughtered animals were broiler chickens, followed by turkeys. Only a comparatively small number of boiling fowls and ducks are slaughtered every year. The volume of meat from broiler chickens was more than ten times larger than the amount of turkey meat produced in 2018.

Approximately 570 companies in the UK produced poultry meat in 2019. Another hundred companies worked on processing and preserving the meat. UK sales from the manufacture of processed and preserved poultry meat came to 4.7 billion British pounds in 2018. Producer prices have gone up for poultry and specifically chicken between 2015 and 2018. Consequently, consumer expenditure for cooked poultry has risen as well.

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Poultry in the United Kingdom (UK)

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