Special Report

12 States That Kill the Most Animals

3. North Carolina
> Total live weight slaughtered (lbs.):
9.87 billion
> Pct. of national production: 7.5%
>Most slaughtered animal (lbs): Chicken
> Animal slaughtering employment: 31,420 (3rd higher)

North Carolina slaughtered a total of 9.87 billion pounds of live meat in 2013, or 7.5% of the nation’s total. About 60% of the weight came from nearly 740 million slaughtered chickens. While it is dwarfed by the state’s larger chicken and hog industries, North Carolina is a major player in the nation’s turkey industry. The state slaughtered slightly less than 950 million pounds of turkey in 2013, or about 27.6 million turkeys, just under 12% of the nation’s total.

2. Texas
> Total live weight slaughtered (lbs.):
11.32 billion
> Pct. of national production: 8.6%
>Most slaughtered animal (lbs): Cattle
> Animal slaughtering employment: 35,340 (the highest)

Texas is one of the juggernauts of the nation’s commercial meat industry. In 2013, the state slaughtered 11.32 billion pounds of live weight, or 8.6% percent of the nation’s total. While the Texas meat industry is at least a modest-sized player across several meat categories, its two specialties are cattle and hogs, which accounted for 66% and 32% of the total state meat slaughter by pound in 2013, respectively. The state is one of the top three cattle producers in the nation. In 2013, the state slaughtered roughly 7.5 billion pounds of cattle, or more than 17% of the national total. Texas also led the nation in hunting kills, with a reported 330,535 bucks in 2013.

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1. Nebraska
> Total live weight slaughtered (lbs.):
11.47 billion
> Pct. of national production: 8.7%
>Most slaughtered animal (lbs): Cattle
> Animal slaughtering employment: 25,760 (6th highest)

Nebraska just edged out Texas for the distinction of slaughtering the most meat by weight of all states. The state’s slaughter total that year was nearly 11.5 billion pounds of live meat. The slaughtering industry had an almost singular focus on cattle, which accounted for more than 80% of the total slaughter weight in the state. At slightly more than 9.3 billion pounds of cattle slaughtered, Nebraska was the number one cattle producer in 2013. Nebraska also had a larger share of its labor force working in the animal slaughter industry than any other state. Nearly 26,000, or about 2.7% of all workers in the state, were employed in animal slaughter and processing. Nebraska is home to the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center, a network of laboratories intended to make meat production more profitable.