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Agricultural News

Checkoff Uses Education To Share the Great Story of American Beef

Thu, 05 Mar 2015 15:53:12 CST

Checkoff Uses Education To Share the Great Story of American Beef

Education is one of the key focus areas of the national beef checkoff program. Cattlemen's Beef Board Chief Executive Officer Polly Ruhland said that education is all about letting consumers know America's cattle producers are doing a great job of producing beef. She calls the message "appropriate transparency".

"It starts with the science and then it goes to the understanding of the consumer and what the consumer needs," Ruhland said. "And the education is pushing out that information in a transparent, appropriate kind-of-way."

Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays featured Ruhland in today's Beef Buzz. Click or tap the LISTENBAR below to listen to today's feature.

With a shrinking cowherd along with inflation and higher costs for nearly everything, the Beef Checkoff Working Group has set out to increase the resources to the checkoff. Ruhland said since the beef checkoff program was established in 1985 that dollar per head investment is now worth 47 cents. In the last three decades, she has found the challenges facing the beef industry have changed and grown over time.

In looking at the future of the beef checkoff, Ruhland said cattlemen have to decide how much money they are willing to invest in marketing their own product. She believes that investment is returned back to the pockets of producers. Ruhland said if they had more financial resources, they could do some pretty amazing things for checkoff investors.

The latest checkoff survey of beef and dairy producers nationwide shows three out of four producers support the beef checkoff. Ruhland said the individuals that disapprove of the beef checkoff program is also at its lowest level in the program's history at 11 percent. She credits the support to the discussions about the checkoff program as cattle producers have had which has made producers realize just how valuable and important the program is.

In terms of future marketing and promotion, Ruhland said they will aggressively pursue global markets, as 95 percent of the world's population is outside the borders of the US. She said they are thinking about how to engage the rest of the world so they can begin to understand the quality and other product attributes of U.S. beef versus beef from other countries.

On the domestic front, consumers are very supportive of protein right now in eating protein with every meal. Ruhland said they are looking at new ways to engage domestic consumers more than once or twice a day in offering new breakfast options.

To listen to the full interview with Ruhland from the Cattle Industry Convention, click here.

The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- but is also a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show- and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.



Ron Hays Beef Buzzes with Polly Ruhland of CBB
right-click to download mp3


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