Today California’s Imperial Valley has about 400,000 cattle on feed — in terms of revenue production, they are the region’s predominant agricultural product. Mesquite Cattle Feeders Inc., owned by Paul Cameron, feeds about 35,000 head there, predominantly Holstein beef cattle that come from San Joaquin Valley dairies and some Mexican cattle, as well as crossbreed cattle from south Texas.

His yard is surrounded by others, which form what Cameron calls a “tight-knit feeding community.” It’s a small group; that 400,000 head is spread among eight or 10 operations.



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