There are currently an estimated 135,700 butchers in the United States. The butcher job market is expected to grow by 5.7% between 2016 and 2026.

How employable are butchers?

CareerExplorer rates butchers with a C employability rating, meaning this career should provide moderate employment opportunities for the foreseeable future. Over the next 10 years, it is expected the US will need 15,400 butchers. That number is based on 7,800 additional butchers, and the retirement of 7,600 existing butchers.

Are butchers in demand?

As more people seek the convenience of fresh, pre-cut, and ready-to-cook meat products, butchers and meat cutters will be needed to prepare them. Demand in the field may shift from retail stores to meat processing plants, as these plants continue to consolidate animal slaughtering and meat processing by preparing and packaging meats at one location. In addition, new automated cutting and packaging equipment may reduce the need for experienced butchers and present employment opportunities for less skilled workers. Imports of pre-packaged and less expensive meat from abroad may negatively impact overall demand for butchers. The physically demanding nature of positions in processing plants may result in job opportunities created by butchers who leave the occupation.

What’s the supply of butchers?

The butcher industry is concentrated in California, Texas, Florida

Butcher job market by state

State Name Employed Butchers
California 19,280
Texas 9,980
Florida 9,600
Illinois 8,100
New York 6,050
Pennsylvania 4,580
Ohio 4,340
North Carolina 3,900
Georgia 3,880
Washington 3,740
New Jersey 3,430
Missouri 3,430
Michigan 3,390
Iowa 3,190
Virginia 3,040
Indiana 2,670
Colorado 2,200
Tennessee 2,120
Arizona 2,090
Massachusetts 2,060
Puerto Rico 2,000
Louisiana 1,990
Minnesota 1,940
Wisconsin 1,830
South Carolina 1,820
Oregon 1,770
Alabama 1,650
Kentucky 1,640
Oklahoma 1,520
Maryland 1,370
Arkansas 1,320
Mississippi 1,260
Nevada 1,210
Utah 1,130
Idaho 1,120
Kansas 910
Nebraska 790
New Mexico 710
South Dakota 700
Connecticut 680
Montana 680
Maine 620
West Virginia 600
Hawaii 590
New Hampshire 520
North Dakota 510
Delaware 310
Alaska 280
Wyoming 250
Vermont 160
Guam 150
Virgin Islands, U.S. 60