It is about the breed

Livestock | 26th March 2024 | By Matt Dalgleish

Market Morsel

Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) published their first cattle producer intentions survey results this week. There is a great amount of data available in the report, but one section that caught our attention was the estimates on popular breeding cattle numbers in the northern and southern regions based on breed type. While not exhaustive, this data gives us a clue to the likely breed proportions across the country.

We have aggregated the northern and southern data to measure breed breakdown on a national basis. Angus cattle is the most popular breed type nationally with 38.3% share of the breeding herd. Meanwhile, Brahman and Droughtmaster breeds come in at second and third top spot nationally on 19.5% and 7.2%, respectively.

Assessing the breed share by southern and northern regions, as expected, shows the dominance of Bos Taurus breeds in the south and Bos Indicus breeds in the north.

Specifically, Angus cattle in the south a very dominant holding 68.4% of the share of the southern breeding herd. Hereford cattle are also fairly well represented on 11.3% in second place. It is a reasonable drop in market share to the third place holder in the southern breeding herd with Shorthorn on 3%, just in front of the European varieties on 2.9%.

While Angus are still represented in the northern breeding herd their numbers a far fewer with a market share of just 6.2%. Brahman cattle are the undisputed kings of the north with 39.8% share of the breeding herd. Droughtmaster cattle are sitting clearly in second place on 14.6% of breeders, but the northern herd also shows a more diverse mix of cattle types than in the south with several categories scoring higher single digit shares. In the northern breeding herd Ultrablack Brangus cattle sit on 9.4%, Wagyu on 8.4%, Charbray on 6.7% and Santa Gertrudis on 6.4%.


  • Cattle
  • Breed
  • Beef
  • Supply and Demand