LONDON, ENGLAND — Animal feed production in Great Britain fell to the lowest level in five years in marketing year 2021-22, according to an Aug. 4 report from the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB).

The AHDB estimated output for 2021-22 at 13.9 million tonnes, which would be the lowest level since the 2016-17 season.

The AHDB said a drop in poultry, cattle and sheep feed production outweighed a rise in pig feed output, leading to the decline.

Total grain usage (wheat, corn, barley and oats) by Great Britain feed compounders was down 2% compared to the previous year, the report said.

Millie Askew, senior analyst at AHDB, said the downward trend in feed production is expected to continue in 2022-23, largely driven by the pig and poultry sectors.

“In 2021-22, we saw pig feed production increase, but it wasn’t necessarily due to the sector thriving,” she said. “Instead, it was as a result of pigs being unable to be slaughtered due to labor shortages, which led to animals being held on farm for longer. With backlogs now cleared or clearing for some and the rising cost of living influencing consumer demand, the UK breeding herd is expected to contract with overall production down.”