Value-Added Programs Ensure Consumers Get Safe and High Quality BeefWed, 21 Oct 2015 16:14:05 CDT
The Oklahoma Quality Beef Network (OQBN) is a joint effort of the Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service and the Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association (OCA). OQBN is a network of beef producers, educators, veterinarians, and industry professionals committed to increasing producers' access to value added marketing opportunities and improving the quality of cattle produced in Oklahoma by increasing communication between all segments of the beef industry.
Gant Mourer, Oklahoma State University Extension Beef Value Enhancement Specialist, runs the OQBN program. He said value-added programs like this one are very important to the end-user, as consumers get assurances on how beef is being produced. OSU Food and Agricultural Economist Dr. Jayson Lusk has studied consumer behavior and he has found consumers are looking for a high-quality safe and healthy product.
"If we do a good job on the ranch we can maintain that safety," Mourer said. "We can maintain the health of those animals, then really sort 'em to any of these other programs once we do that. That's what the consumer wants is a safe product. Then we can ship those animals into really any value-added program that we want to."
OQBN provides producers, and others in the beef industry, with education and tools to enhance access to value-added programs. With less ten percent of the state's beef producers enrolled in OQBN there is a need to grow the program. Mourer said that's makes for a challenge in getting data to identify pre-conditioned calves. There are a lot of pre-conditioned calves selling each week at sale barns across the state. Mourer said reputation is also key in getting buyers to purchase cattle from the same ranch year after year.
Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays caught up with Mourer at the Cattlemen's Boot Camp in Stillwater. Click or tap on the LISTEN BAR below to hear today's Beef Buzz.
To learn more about OQBN and the 2015 sale locations, 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.
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