FRANKFORT — With more than a million beef cows, Kentucky boasts the largest beef cattle inventory east of the Mississippi River and the eighth-most in the nation as the state celebrates May Beef Month.
“With the weather warming, I urge Kentuckians to join me by throwing some locally-sourced burgers on their backyard grills in honor of May as Beef Month,” Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said. “Beef is not only good for you as part of a healthy, balanced diet, but buying Kentucky Proud beef is good for the state’s economy, keeping your hard-earned money right here at home.”
Kentucky is home to 38,000 beef cattle producers according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service. The commonwealth is 14th in the nation for the total number of beef cows and calves with an inventory of 2.13 million head as of Jan. 1.
Kentucky produced more than 594 million pounds of beef last year valued at over $648 million. Beef cattle sales accounted for more than $692 million in cash receipts to Kentucky producers in 2019 and gross income of over $703 million.
Barren County reigns as the top county in Kentucky in the total number of cattle and calves, as well as beef cows. Madison and Pulaski counties follow in the rankings for cattle and calves. The counties flip-flopped in beef cows, with Pulaski in second place and Madison third.
The Kentucky Department of Agriculture helps producers find new markets for their cattle, conducts beef cattle shows, tracks market prices, and protects Kentucky’s herds from disease. To find out more about the Department’s services, go to www.kyagr.com.
Consumers can locate Kentucky Cattlemen’s Ground Beef burgers, made with locally-sourced beef raised by Kentucky producers at Kroger stores across the state. To find local beef near you, visit kyproud.com/beef.