June 30, 2006


Brazil's Q1 chicken slaughter up 12 percent on-year



Brazil chicken producers increased chicken meat processing by 12 percent in the first quarter of 2006 in comparison to the same period last year, but it rose only 1 percent compared to the last quarter of 2005, the Brazilian Census Bureau (IBGE) said Thursday (Jun 29).


Roughly 1.014 billion chickens were processed for meat in the period, or the equivalent of 2.08 million tonnes of meat.


The Brazilian Poultry Union (UBA), said in an interview that the increase was because the country's chicken producers only started reducing production in February due to bird flu scares in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Brazil is the world's leading chicken exporter.


UBA put the first quarter 2006 slaughter at 1.1 billion chickens, up 9.5 percent from the same period last year.


Between January and May 31, 1.8 billion chickens were processed for meat, 3 percent more than in 2005.


In tonnage, 3.8 million tonnes of meat were produced over the January-to-May-31 period, UBA said, adding that 1 million tonnes were exported, 5 percent less than in 2005.


In March, Brazil had roughly 340 million chickens waiting for slaughter compared to 374 million in March 2005. April numbers fell to 333 million birds compared to 370 million in April 2005 and May fell to 376 million birds compared to 394 million in May 2005, according to UBA.


"The volume rise we're seeing now is from birds in February and May. The trend is for this number to decline in the next two months to reflect the general decline in production by the industry," said Clovis Puperi, president of UBA.


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