Beef production was three percent higher than a year earlier, helping to limit lower values in veal and pork production.

September beef production numbers increased over the same month a year earlier, but the three percent increase in both production and slaughter figures is partially explained by the extra weekday.

According to the latest livestock slaughter data released by the USDA, beef production in September totaled 2.07 billion pounds, a three percent increase over a year earlier, but eight percent lower than a month ago.

Similar patterns were noted for cattle slaughter records. Last month’s total of 2.61 million head was three percent above last year, but seven percent lower than the previous month’s 2.82 million head.

The average live weight was 1,313 pounds, three pounds heavier than the previous month and two pounds more than last year.

Overall red meat production in September was slightly lower than the previous year with a total of 3.94 billion pounds.

Veal production totaled 8.6 million pounds, 3 percent below September a year ago. Calf slaughter totaled 62,900 head, down 2 percent from September 2012. The average live weight was down 1 pound from last year, at 234 pounds.