Oklahoma Cattle Producer Clay Burtrum Outlines 2016 Beef Checkoff EffortsThu, 15 Oct 2015 14:37:06 CDT
Collection of the $1 per head beef checkoff has been happening since the late 1980’s. Half of that dollar stays in the state where the dollar is collected. The other half is sent on to the Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion Board. That funding is invested or allocated by the Beef Promotion Operating Committee. The 20 committee members are cattle producers from across the nation. Currently, three of those members are from Texas, three from Nebraska, two from Kansas and two from Oklahoma. One of those representing Oklahoma is cattle producer Clay Burtrum from the Stillwater area. He is in his second year on the Beef Promotion Operating Committee. Dairy producer Brett Morris of Ninekah currently serves as the Secretary-Treasurer of the Cattlemen's Beef Board and has a seat on the Operating Committee as well. Burtrum said every year the committee spends a lot of time looking at ideas on how to best spend the beef checkoff monies.
In setting out a plan for 2016, the committee met in Denver in September. The group of beef producers spent a full day listening to proposals that had gone through committee process at the Cattle Industry Summer Convention. Burtrum said cattle producers that serve on those committees reviewed and scored each proposal. He said a significant part of the beef checkoff funding goes toward interaction with today’s consumer.
“Our audience has changed,” Burtrum said. "We’re in a millennial generation in the social media age. People aren’t planning meals for a week now, they are planning a meal at 4:30 in the afternoon. So, we have to be in that social media environment, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and those areas right now. So we’ve really upped the campaign to a digital media platform.”
Last year, the beef checkoff changed its promotion efforts, in switching from traditional media to a digital platform. Burtrum said this is a focused change for the Beef Promotion Operating Committee.
In recent years, funding to the nation’s beef checkoff has shrunk due to ongoing drought in key cattle production areas like the Southern Great Plains. For fiscal year 2016, the beef checkoff will spend $42 million, an uptick in spending of $3 million from last year. About $10.3 million was allocated for research programs, $9 million for promotion programs, $8.4 million for foreign marketing and education in some 80 countries, $8.1 million for consumer information programs, $4.7 million for industry information programs and about $1.5 million for producer communications. He said contractors for the beef checkoff, like the American Farm Bureau Foundation, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, National Livestock Producers Association and U.S. Meat Export Federation all do a great job in bringing their work to the Cattlemen’s Beef Board. Burtrum said the money invested with USMEF gets a lot of return for the checkoff dollar. Research has determined that each dollar invested in foreign markets from the beef checkoff returns $43 to American beef producers.
Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays featured Burtrum on the Beef Buzz feature. Click or tap on the LISTEN BAR below to listen to today's Beef Buzz.
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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