Companies in this industry are ranches and farms that raise cattle, including those intended for dairy herd replacements, and feedlots that fatten cattle in preparation for slaughter. Major companies include Cactus Feeders, Five Rivers Cattle Feeding, King Ranch, and Simplot Livestock (all based in the US), as well as Anzco Foods (New Zealand), Elders Victorian Feedlot (Australia), JBS (Brazil), Killara Feedlot (Australia), and Sukarne (Mexico).
Demand is driven by food prices, population growth, and global trade policies. The profitability of individual operations depends on production efficiency and anticipating market demand. Large operators have some advantages in volume purchasing and efficient use of labor and equipment. Small operators can compete successfully by producing special grades of beef cattle and by controlling costs carefully. The industry is concentrated: the top 6% of farms generate about 75% of revenue.