Data published by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) shows that calf birth registrations in Britain were down 2.1%, or just over 32,000 head, during the first half of 2023.

Total calf births over the first six months of the year amounted to 1.53m head, of which 1.3m are expected to be sold for beef production, down 1.8%, or 23,400 year-on-year.

The largest decline in birth registrations applies to dairy male calves, with a 19% reduction on last year, driven by the increase in the use of sexed and beef semen in dairy herds.

Beef calves born to a dairy dam rose by 1.7%, whereas calf births recorded to a suckler dam are down 3.5%.

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