Cattle breeding is our business
2 2 Casa Branca Press
Brazil has the largest commercial herd in the world (200 million bovine), produces 8.5 million tonnes of beef and exports 2 million tonnes/year. All this without damaging the environment.
he last three decades have placed Brazilian cattle breeding on the global map of bovine beef production. Before the 80s, the country was already known globally for its potential and a few examples of successful projects. However, at that time the activity’s indicators were really Third World. The herd always was the high point and, in a certain measure, motive of pride. At the end of the 70s, there were already more than 120 million heads. But it was the only thing which stood out. The production of red meat was over 3 million tons/year – which is not little, but the result of purely extensive breeding -, the production (percentage of the herd which goes to slaughter) - oscillated around 10%. The result of exports was not remarkable and Brazil sold without much commitment, in addition to being a considerable importer of beef. At the time, (up to the 70s) Brazilian cattle breeding was one among dozens of promising activities in the country and hardly significant on global levels.
Thus, if someone at that time had predicted that at the beginning of the 21st century Brazil would have one of the biggest and best herds in the world, even to the most passionate cattle breeder, they would probably have been called crazy. But it happened. Today the planet watches the explosive growth of Brazilian cattle breeding expressionless. The herd has increased almost 80% in 30 years, but this index doesn’t even compare to the explosion of production (evolution of almost 300%), production turnover (today three times greater) and exports (multiplied around 20 times). “The world has to get ready for the power and force of cattle breeding” says the minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Supply Roberto Rodrigues in a recent pronouncement. “More than this, the countries traditionally strong in bovine beef have to match forces with Brazilian cattle breeding and fight for spaces in global commerce with it”, emphasizes the minister.
Junho de 2006 / ano 2 - número 03