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Beef Production By State 2021

The United States is the world's largest producer of beef, primarily high-quality, grain-fed beef.

Beef farms and ranches represent over 30% of U.S. farms, making up the single largest U.S. agricultural sector. The U.S. beef industry is roughly divided into two sectors: cow-calf operations and cattle feeding. The focus of the cow-calf operation is to maintain a herd of beef cattle to raise calves. The cattle feeding sector focuses on preparing cattle for various means of production.

Beef cattle are raised in all 50 U.S. states. As of January 2021, there are 31,157,600 beef cows in the United States. This is down 1% from one year ago. Texas has the most beef cows, followed by Oklahoma, Missouri, and Nebraska.

Number of Beef Cows by State

The number of cattle in every state is a good indicator of how much beef each state produces. Seven states have over 1 million beef cows in 2021.

The ten states with the highest number of beef cows are:

  1. Texas - 4,685,000
  2. Oklahoma - 2,189,000
  3. Missouri - 2,035,000
  4. Nebraska - 1,900,000
  5. South Dakota - 1,799,000
  6. Kansas - 1,447,000
  7. Montana - 1,419,000
  8. Kentucky - 983,000
  9. North Dakota - 975,000
  10. Florida - 929,000

Together, these states have 18,391,000 beef cows, comprising 59.02% of the United States's total beef cows. This means that the remaining 40 states make up 40.98%.

Rhode Island has the fewest cows with 1,000, followed by Delaware with 1,800 and New Hampshire with 4,500. Connecticut, Massachusetts, Alaska, and New Jersey all have fewer than 10,000 cows. Together, these seven states have only 35,200 beef cows and make up just 0.11% of the country's total cows.

Here are the 10 states with the highest number of cows:

  1. Texas (4,685,000)
  2. Oklahoma (2,189,000)
  3. Missouri (2,035,000)
  4. Nebraska (1,900,000)
  5. South Dakota (1,799,000)
  6. Kansas (1,477,000)
  7. Montana (1,419,000)
  8. Kentucky (983,000)
  9. North Dakota (975,000)
  10. Florida (929,000)

Beef Production By State 2021

State Number of Cows
Texas4,685,000
Oklahoma2,189,000
Missouri2,035,000
Nebraska1,900,000
South Dakota1,799,000
Kansas1,477,000
Montana1,419,000
Kentucky983,000
North Dakota975,000
Florida929,000
Arkansas925,000
Tennessee900,000
Iowa890,000
Wyoming702,000
Alabama697,000
California670,000
Colorado659,000
Virginia595,000
Oregon525,000
Georgia509,000
Mississippi482,000
Idaho474,000
New Mexico463,000
Louisiana445,000
North Carolina370,000
Illinois356,000
Utah345,000
Minnesota345,000
Wisconsin310,000
Ohio302,000
Nevada245,000
Washington221,000
Pennsylvania215,000
Indiana194,000
Arizona194,000
West Virginia190,000
South Carolina168,000
Michigan100,000
New York95,000
Hawaii76,400
Maryland45,000
Delaware18,000
Vermont14,000
Maine10,000
New Jersey8,600
Alaska7,300
Massachusetts7,000
Connecticut5,000
New Hampshire4,500
Rhode Island1,000

Beef Production By State 2021