In this fact sheet: Sheep production & welfare, Disease, Transport, Slaughter, Wool, References
There are around 32 million sheep in the UK. Just over 16 million are lambs (sheep under 1 year of age) and the rest are sheep used for breeding. Sheep are mainly farmed for meat (lamb and mutton) they are also used to produce wool and some milk.
Sheep farming produces around 300,000 tonnes of meat representing 85% of the sheep meat eaten in the UK, it is the largest sheep industry in Europe. Most sheep are slaughtered as lambs.
Whilst the majority of sheep appear to have been less affected by intensive farming practices compared with other farm animals their rearing can still involve considerable suffering and welfare problems. Flocks used for milk production are subjected to a more intensive system than conventional flocks (1).
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