As of January 1, there were 92.0 million head of cattle and calves on U.S. farms, according to the Cattle report published by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). This is the highest U.S. cattle inventory since 2011.
Other key findings in the report were:
- There were 92.0 million cattle and calves, in the United States as of January 1, 2016, up 3 percent from last year. Of this total 39.6 million were all cows and heifers that have calved.
- There are 30.3 million beef cows, up 4 percent from last year.
- The number of milk cows in the United States increased slightly to 9.32 million.
- All cattle on feed increased to 13.2 million, up 1 percent from 2015.
- U.S. calf crop was estimated at 34.3 million head, up 2 percent from 2015.
To obtain an accurate measurement of the current state of the U.S. cattle industry, NASS surveyed about 38,000 operators across the nation during the first half of January. NASS interviewers collected the data by mail, telephone, internet, and through face-to-face personal interviews. NASS asked all participating producers to report their cattle inventories as of January 1, 2016.