Hereford is a city in Deaf Smith County, Texas, United States. The population was 14,597 at the 2000 census. It is the only incorporated Hereford in the country. It is the county seat of Deaf Smith County.Hereford's local water supply contains an unusually high level of naturally-occurring fluorine. Because fluoride is used to protect against tooth decay, Hereford earned the title "The Town Without a Toothache". High levels of fluoride consumed by longtime or younger residents may result in staining.It is also known as the "Beef Capital of the World" because of the large number of cattle fed in the area. The city is named for the Hereford breed. The local economy is affected significantly by growth in the dairy and ethanol industries.The area is known for its semiarid climate with heavy farming and ranching throughout the area sustained by irrigation from the Ogallala Aquifer and the saltier Santa Rosa Aquifer beneath it.Hereford is home to the headquarters of the Deaf Smith Electric Cooperative, which serves Deaf Smith, Castro, Parmer, and Oldham counties.A rich Western heritage includes the Las Escarbadas ranch house of the XIT Ranch located southwest of Hereford in Deaf Smith County. The restored historic structure can now be seen at the National Ranching Heritage Center at Texas Tech University. The Deaf Smith County Historical Museum at 400 Sampson Street in Hereford offers indoor and outdoor exhibits on the settlement of West Texas.