EXPANSION in the broiler sector continued for another month during October, according to the latest figures.
Day-old chick placings rose by 1.4m in October, compared with the same month last year, to 112m.
It marks the fourth monthly increase in a row, and means that an additional 12.6m chicks were placed on farms during the July-October period compared with the same months of 2021.
These increases have now almost reversed the cut-backs of 14.3m during the first half of this year, with the cumulative total now down by 1.7m overall since January.
Chicken meat output was up by 1,000 tonnes in October year-on-year, while average liveweight rose by around 1%.
Overall, during the first ten months of this year, chicken output was up by 1.5% on 2021, to 1.52 million tonnes, despite the placings cut-backs from January-June.
In general, liveweights increased when bird numbers were down, and vice-versa.
Turkey poult numbers were down by 225,000 in October, the biggest monthly fall this year.
Apart from a small rise in January, poult placings have now shown cut-backs in every month this year compared with last.
The smallest percentage cut-backs were in the busiest months of July, August and September, suggesting that producers believe the Christmas market will be least affected by the economic downturn.
Taking the year as a whole, poult numbers have been down by 1.06m on 2021, a drop of 8%.