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Companies in this industry manufacture food for livestock including beef and dairy cattle, poultry, hogs, and other food animals, primarily from grains, proteins, vitamins, and other ingredients. Top US companies include ADM, Cargill, Purina Mills, and Scoular; other companies include Charoen Pokphand Foods (Thailand), Nutreco (the Netherlands), New Hope Liuhe (China), and Ridley (Australia).
Growing demand for animal protein in developing nations has driven growth in the market for livestock feed. China’s growing middle class is shifting to a diet that includes more meat as wages rise and populations move to the cities. China accounts for about 10% of US livestock feed exports. Improving conditions in African nations are driving demand for meat, which in turn fuels demand for livestock feed. African farmers import most of their livestock feed from the US, Brazil, China, and Europe.
The US livestock feed industry includes about 900 companies with combined annual revenue of about $35 billion.
Demand is driven by the livestock production industry. The profitability of individual companies depends on efficient operations. Large companies and cooperatives can benefit from economies of scale. Companies such as Cargill and ADM have their own distribution, processing, and storage facilities (silos and other farm infrastructure). Small companies can compete by meeting demand from small, specialized farming operations, such as organic cattle and poultry producers, and by providing products for hobby farmers. The industry is concentrated; the ...
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