Companies in this industry raise or fatten animals for the purpose of selling animals or animal products. Major companies include Agri Beef, Dairy Farmers of America, Pilgrim's Pride, and Smithfield Foods (all based in the US) as well as JBS (Brazil), Industrias Bachoco (Mexico), Ingham Enterprises (Australia), and WH Group (Hong Kong).
Demand for meat, poultry, and dairy products is driven by domestic food consumption trends. The profitability of individual farms depends on efficient operations. Large companies have advantages in vertically integrated operations and economies of scale. Small operations can compete effectively by supplying local markets, specializing in heritage breeds, or raising humanely treated or hormone-free animals.
Products, Operations & Technology
Major products are live cattle and calves (40% of industry revenue); poultry and eggs (25%); dairy products (20%); and live hogs and pigs (10%). Other products include sheep, horses and farmed fish.