Meat packing Industrys

The Big Four Meatpackers — High Country News
September 15, 2016 – 09:47 pm

About 35 million cattle are slaughtered in the U.S. annually by 60 major beef-packing operations processing around 26 billion pounds of beef. Four firms control over 80 percent of all the beef slaughtered.


Tyson Foods Springdale, Ark.

Daily slaughter capacity 28, 700

U.S. market share 25 percent

Beef sales $12.7 billion

Company overview
Tyson bought the world’s largest supplier of premium beef and pork products, IBP Inc., in 2001. It’s the second-largest pork and chicken packer in the U.S. and sells its products in 90 countries.

Cargill Meat Solutions Corp. Wichita, Kan.

Daily slaughter capacity 29, 000

U.S. market share
21 percent
Beef sales Cargill Meat Solutions would not release this data. Its parent company, Cargill Inc., reported $88.3 billion in sales in 2009.

Company overview
Cargill Meat Solutions is one of 75 businesses under Cargill Inc., the largest privately-held corporation in the United States. Cargill runs the biggest flour-milling company in the world, is a leading corn syrup and soybean processor, and has cocoa and chocolate operations on four continents. It employs 131, 000 people in 66 countries, including Canada, Mexico and China.

JBS USA Greeley, Colo.

Daily slaughter capacity
28, 600

U.S. market share 18.5 percent

Beef sales $9.2 billion

Company overview
JBS USA bought Swift (the-third largest packer) in 2007, then bought Smithfield (the fifth-largest packer and largest U.S. feedlot owner) in 2008, then bought Pilgrim’s Pride, the largest chicken processor, in 2009. The company tried to buy National Beef Packing Co. in 2008, but the U.S. Department of Justice opposed the acquisition. The parent company, Brazil-based JBS S.A., is the largest beef packer in the world, with 54 processing plants on four continents.

National Beef Packing Co., LLC Kansas City, Mo.

Daily slaughter capacity 14, 000

U.S. market share 10.5 percent
Beef sales $5.4 billion

Company overview

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