Scottish Agricultural Census: June 2019

Statistics regarding the area of crops and other farmland, livestock, agriculture workforce and rented farmland.

This document is part of a collection

Scottish sheep flock recovers after poor weather

Scottish sheep flock recovers after poor weather

Lamb numbers recovered over the past year. In 2019 there were 3.25 million lambs, an increase of four per cent. This increase was likely caused by better weather conditions during the spring lambing season, after the ‘Beast from the East’ snowstorm caused a drop in numbers in 2018.

Breeding ewes remained steady. Overall the increase of one per cent in total sheep numbers was driven by the rise in lambs.

  • Number of sheep 6.67 million

The favoured UK cuts of meat are leg and loin which means the value of imports is slightly more than exports.

Most imports of sheep meat to the UK are from New Zealand. Because their spring is during the UK’s autumn, the nature of imports and exports is highly seasonal.

Despite the small increase over the past year the Scottish flock size is still below levels seen before 2005 when farm support payments based on the number of sheep owned stopped.



Back to top