Traceability Programs Help Meet Our Customers Needs While Adding Value to Our Beef Supply ChainFri, 26 Jan 2018 11:25:02 CST
The demand for traceable cattle is on the rise as consumers both domestic and internationally are asking for more information about their food and where it comes from. Doug Stanton, vice president of Where Food Comes From, works with cattlemen and women to help them comply with verification programs that allow their beef access into the global marketplace. He says new innovation in the industry, like the development of smart tags and electronic tracking devices have helped to create a traceable source of beef that can be marketed and provide consumers with the information they want.
“If cattle move from a cow/calf operation to a backgrounder, then the backgrounder reads that ID tag at receiving and verifies that animal is in the approved status for the particular attributes they’re looking at, with a company that originally approved the cow/calf operation,” he explained.
The information that can be collected can vary depending on what the customer chooses to focus on, generally things such as age and source of origin. Stanton uses Japan as an example, which chose to focus on cattle’s age and would only accept cattle of 20 months or under - a concern stemming from a preoccupation with BSE. One of our newest markets, China, lies in stark contrast to Japan’s required traceability measures - opting for more emphasis on where livestock come from and where they go from birth to slaughter. Having the ability to provide this information goes a long way for a concerned customer. Stanton says it puts the US in a better position on the global market.
“The key thing is being able to provide the information customers are demanding. It’s at least being verified,” he said. “If we can put ourselves a little bit closer to the competition, like Uruguay and Australia and some of the big suppliers to the EU, then that is positive for US beef.”
Listen to Stanton explain how traceability programs add value to the US beef supply chain, with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays, 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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