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Ökologischer Betrieb
© BLE, Bonn/Thomas Stephan
Ökologischer Betrieb
Institute of

BW Farm Economics


How is beef produced

Cattle in barns and the feeding of (maize)silages are prevailing in the European beef production
© Thünen-Institut/Claus Deblitz
Cattle in barns and the feeding of (maize)silages are prevailing in the European beef production

International comparative analysis of beef production within the agri benchmark Beef and Sheep Network

What is the position of German cattle production in the international context, what are the strengths and weaknesses and the potential?

Background and Objective

Farm-level comparisons of economics and production costs are one method to assess competitiveness. The strengths and weaknesses of the German cattle production can be identified through the comparison of farm data within a global frame. These information are important to carry out an ex ante evaluation of policy options and thus be able to give advice to policy. Furthermore it helps to identify and understand driving forces for future trends and developments in global beef production and analyse the impact of changing economic, technological and political framework conditions on farming operations, farm structures and agricultural production.


We coordinate the national and international data collection for cow-calf, beef finishing and sheep production to be able to give an international comparative analysis of beef production. Cost of production, profitability and time series in the different countries are the results of our analysis. These kinds of analysis are carried out on a global scale and under the auspices of Thünen Institute within the expert network agri benchmark Beef and Sheep.

Data and Methods

The data of typical farms and production systems are collected using harmonised methods and taking the specific regional situation on spot into account. Analysis of world markets, trade, market shares, agricultural policy and sector developments of beef production complement the expert knowledge of the participating production economists, advisors and producers.

Preliminary Results

Results of our analyses can be found on the agri benchmark Website at

Links and Downloads

Involved external Thünen-Partners

  • global networks (gUG)
    (Braunschweig, Deutschland)


8.2011 - 12.2024

More Information

Project status: ongoing

Publications to the project

  1. 0

    Deblitz C, Wildegger B (2014) Is free trade a threat for EU-beef production? : a study analyses competitiveness in case of a tariff liberalisation between EU and US. Fleischwirtsch Int 94(3):28-32

  2. 1

    Deblitz C, Wildegger B (2014) Rindfleisch: Gefährdet der Freihandel die Produktion? : eine neue Studie untersucht die Wettbewerbsfähigkeit und Perspektiven des Abkommens. Fleischwirtsch 94(3):28-33

  3. 2

    Ewigmann B, Theuvsen L, Davier Z von, Deblitz C (2013) Verlässliche Vermarktung und solides Wachstum. Top Agrar(10):120-123

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