The beef industry as a whole is nearly recession-proof, suggested Brett Stuart, president of Global AgriTrends, an agricultural economics and analysis company based in Utah.

“There is a bright future ahead for cattle ranching,” he told attendees at the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association’s annual Leadership Summit last week. “You should plan on your kids ranching, plan on your grandkids ranching.”

Stuart’s optimism for the cattle industry comes from both short-term and long-term trends in world beef consumption.

Short-term strength

The U.S. cattle herd ...