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UK Farming Statistics

19 September 2013

UK Farming Statistics - Final Crop Areas, Yields, Livestock Populations - June 2013UK Farming Statistics - Final Crop Areas, Yields, Livestock Populations - June 2013

UK Farming Statistics

This release contains the final estimates of crop areas and livestock numbers on commercial agricultural holdings in England on 1 June 2013. The results in this release are final and will not be updated. Results are not yet available for the areas of owned and rented land, poultry, horses, goats, farmed deer, camelids and labour numbers. These will be published on 31 October 2013.

Approximately 50 thousand commercial holdings were asked to complete the survey and results are based on 31 thousand responses, representing a response rate of 62%. Commercial holdings are those farms with a significant level of activity. A full definition can be found in the methodology section on page 16. The key results are given below.

Agricultural land use and ownership

The utilised agricultural area (UAA) in England increased by 1.0% between 2012 and 2013 from 8.9 to 9.0 million hectares. The total croppable area accounts for just over half (54%) of UAA and increased by 0.8% to just under 4.9 million hectares in 2013. Permanent grassland accounts for an additional 42% of UAA and also increased in 2013 to 3.7 million hectares.

Estimates of the areas of land owned and rented will be published on 31 October 2013.


The area of arable and horticultural crops both decreased in 2013 falling by 1.7% and 6.1% respectively. This resulted in an overall decrease of 1.9% in the area of total crops. Difficult weather conditions led to many farmers growing spring sown crops instead of winter sown varieties. This is highlighted by the decreases seen in wheat, winter barley and winter oilseed rape and the increases in spring sown barley and spring oilseed rape. As a result other arable crops were also favoured this year with maize, field beans and peas for harvesting dry increasing by 27%, 26% and 21% respectively.

In some cases many farmers were unable to plant certain crops due to water logged fields. As a result large areas of land have been left out of production and the area of uncropped arable land increased by 74% to 237 thousand hectares. 


The total number of cattle and calves in England is just under 5.4 million in June 2013, showing almost no change since 2012. The total breeding herd fell by 1.6% to 1.8 million in 2013. This was due to a 3.0% decrease in the beef herd which now stands at 720 thousand. The dairy herd remained at 1.1 million animals.


The total number of pigs in England increased by 11% to just under 4.1 million animals in 2013. This was as a result of the 13% increase seen in the number of fattening pigs which rose from 3.2 million in 2012 to 3.6 million in 2013. Breeding pigs saw a small decrease of 0.6% to 434 thousand pigs in 2013.


The total number of sheep and lambs increased by 2.1% from 14.6 million in 2012 to 14.9 million in 2013. The female breeding flock increased by 3.8% to 7.1 million whereas the number of lambs remained almost unchanged at 7.4 million.


Estimates of the poultry population will be published on 31 October 2013.


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