The calf is the focus at Nantes International Symposium. Its weight increases while the slaughtering register an opposite trend

Europe, since 1984, lost 10 million heads. However, since 2015 there has been an increase in the production of calf meat. Nevertheless, it is too early to determine whether the return of this growth is structural or economic. Generally speaking,  the trend of calf production in the Old Continent is proportional to that of consumption which is down from the 60s. Jean-Marc Chaumet, a researcher at the Economic Department of the Institut de l’Elevage (IDELE), claims that data back this declaration. The news came during “Re-Veal Your Mind”, the 6th international symposium of the calf-supply chain in La Baule (Nantes, 25-26 April). In Europe, calf populations are poorer than 10 million units when compared to 1984. The only country that is going against the general trend is the Netherlands. Weight gain offsets the decrease in availability. A French calf in 1983 weighed an average of 110 kilogrammes (already rising over the 90’s in the 1970’s) while weighing 142 in the US today. The United States and Canada, where the supply chain is not performing well, registered a similar pattern. While in 2002 there were 600,000 calves fed for the slaughterhouse, in 2016 the figure was more than halved, passing to 218,000 units.


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