Due to its geographical location, Colombia has a wide variety of thermal floors (pisos térmicos) that extend from sea level to high-altitude (páramo) regions. This allows the exploitation of different cow breeds to produce beef, dairy, or both. Colombia's livestock sector is very broad, with a cattle inventory of approximately 28 million head distributed across 623,794 farms.
Source: Colombian Agriculture and Livestock Institute (ICA, as per its Spanish acronym) – 2020. https://www.ica.gov.co/areas/pecuaria/servicios/epidemiologia-veterinar…
Why invest in Colombia's livestock sector?
Relevance of Colombia's cattle herd
- With approximately 28.2 million head of cattle, Colombia has the fourth largest cattle herd in Latin America. The cattle inventory and genetics are the factors that contribute to Colombian beef's potential. Cattle farms are located in the departments of Antioquia (11.3%), Caquetá (7.9%), Meta (7.7%), Casanare (7.6%), and Córdoba (7.6%).
Sources: ICA - 2020. https://www.ica.gov.co/areas/pecuaria/servicios/epidemiologia-veterinar… FAO - 2020. http://www.fao.org/faostat/es/#home
Beef consumption in Colombia
- Beef is the second most consumed animal protein in Colombia, after chicken. Beef consumption equaled 760,303 tons in 2019—a 360-ton increase compared to 2018. By 2028, consumption is expected to be up 17% over 2019 numbers.
Source: FAO AND OECD - 2020. http://www.agri-outlook.org/data/
Colombian cattle's distinctive characteristics
- The country's privileged geographic location allows cattle to be grass-fed all year round without using growth hormones or boosters and promoting natural growth and fattening cycles.
- Colombia has implemented silvopasture systems for livestock production in order to continue supporting the sustainable development of the livestock sector, increasing forage quality and minimizing environmental impact.
Colombia, a beef exporter
- Colombia's beef exports showed a 117% increase over the last five years, reaching a total value of USD 75.9 million in 2019.
- Colombia has ports both on the Caribbean Coast and the Pacific Coast, as well as logistics facilities with cold chain infrastructure for beef exports.
Learn about investment opportunities in Colombia's livestock sector:
- Invest in improving cold storage near to production centers to gain entry and offer higher quality standards in international markets.
- Develop greenfield projects and/or local partnerships to manufacture beef by-products.
- Form productive partnerships with local stakeholders to develop and increase current output in the processed meat industry.
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