Market Economist Glynn Tonsor Explains How Social Pressures are Shaping Today's Beef IndustryFri, 28 Apr 2017 16:03:44 CDT
Used to, the main concerns consumers had when it came to the beef products they purchased was having a consistently great eating experience and knowing they were serving their families a safe, wholesome meal. Today, that is still true but now consumers also are concerned about how beef is raised - organically or traditionally, is it grass fed? Is it all natural? The list goes on. Livestock Market Economist Glynn Tonsor told Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays that the industry needs to be paying attention to these concerns and making sure it is doing a good job responding to questions.
“Society in general is increasingly shaping how meat is produced,” he said. “They’re doing it in different ways. Anybody that’s on the supply side of that story needs to be cognizant of that, because at the extreme, you can have mandates put upon you that you need to be aware of.”
Tonsor says collectively, the public is making these mandates one of two ways. Either through the things they buy, or through the pressures put onto the consumer. He explains that society as a whole, as it develops with ideas and trends, influences the purchasing decisions of the consumer through this “relational pressure.” Society has staged a recent trend to become aware of sustainability and production practices on farms and ranches, for example. In turn, this has caused consumers to question the way in which their food is raised and cared for, and how ranchers manage their operations. While many in this part of the country, here in the heartland may consider themselves traditionalists, probably opting to buy their meat based on the quality of taste, safety and price, Tonsor says the rest of the consumer base may not think the same way.
“While that can be very frustrating to livestock producers, and I fully appreciate that,” Tonsor said, “that doesn’t change the fact that’s the way it is now in the US and you have got to keep in mind that the bulk of the product that is consumed is where the people are. And most of the people are on the coast.”
Listen to Tonsor and Hays discuss the way society is shaping the beef industry today, on today’s Beef Buzz.
The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network and is 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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