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Building beef demand by inspiring, unifying and supporting an effective state/national checkoff partnership.

Profile: Kentucky Beef Council

Kentucky Beef Council Aims to Win, Place and Show There’s a lot on the plates of staff of the Kentucky Beef Council this Kentucky BEEF spring. First, the KBC is engaging Council consumers during the excitement that surrounds one of Kentucky’s most famous events, the Kentucky Derby. The organization was very involved in the Kentucky Derby Festival, which is the month-long run up to the Derby. For the fourth year, for instance, KBC held the Derby Burger Cook-Off, which was promoted at various events in and around Louisville. Retailer Kroger partnered with KBC on the project. The retail chain featured the winning recipe in participating Louisville stores and provided additional in-store sampling promotions. It also allowed consumers to register at stores in Lexington and Louisville in April for tickets to Derby events. This year’s winning burger, the Blueberry Bourbon Burger, featured ground beef stuffed with bourbon infused blueberries, topped with cheddar cheese, bacon, arugula, and maple bourbon aioli, all served on a delicious bun. After the Derby, the KBC is conducting an extensive media tour to help celebrate Kentucky Beef Month in May, sharing beef information and conducting grilling demonstrations and other promotions throughout the state.

Mandy Carr Johnson, NCBA senior executive director, science and product solutions, explains checkoff-funded research programs managed by NBCA to attendees of an orientation for new state beef council directors. Thirtysix beef industry leaders representing beef councils in 21 states attended the orientation at the NCBA offices in Denver April 13-14. At the session, state beef council board members and staff obtained first-hand information on the structure, coordination and management of the Beef Checkoff Program, for which NCBA is a contractor.

KBC is also actively transitioning from traditional media to digital media, including Pandora Radio, YouTube, Facebook and the KBC website. KBC will work with retailers for an extended online push of digital media. Assisting in this effort has been the national checkofffunded digital media team, which has provided guidance on media mix and other elements of Kentucky’s digital platforms. “We’ve taken advantage of every digital opportunity available to us since the transition to digital was made at the national level,” according to Leanna McGuire, Kentucky Cattlemen’s Assocation communications manager. “Working with the digital media team at NCBA, we’re aggressively seeking ways to maximize focus on beef in the state.” Kentucky’s Team BEEF is also active throughout the year, allowing KBC to become more involved in the local running community. The athletic team promoting beef to an active lifestyle audience is a good metaphor for how the KBC conducts its programs overall. “Ours is a coordinated effort that builds on partnerships and on those promotion elements that will generate the most attention for beef in Kentucky,” says Dave Maples, KBC executive vice president. “While we’re running plenty hard every month, during April and May we’re going at a full sprint.” Beef producers in Kentucky voted last November to assess themselves an additional $1 per head on cattle marketed in the state, effective April 1. Funds from the checkoff will promote the cattle industry in Kentucky, and are in addition to the current national $1-per-head beef checkoff. Kentucky is one of 13 states that have, or will soon have, state checkoffs over the $1-per-head national beef checkoff. Kentucky Beef Council Facts: Established: 1978 Two-hat state, with Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association 2015 KBC Chairman: Steve Dunning, Christian County Cattlemen’s Beef Board members on KBC: Julianna Jepsen and Ryan Miller

Jennifer Houston, Federation chair and a livestock auction market operator from Sweetwater, Tenn., and a representative of the U.S. Meat Export Federation, visit with a meat buyer at an AEON supermarket in Tokyo. Houston was in Tokyo as part of a 10-person U.S. delegation to a Market Expo to China and Japan in early March. At the expo the delegation had a chance to explore market opportunities to the two countries by visiting with buyers, meat processors, retail stores and wholesale outlets. The visits were facilitated by USMEF staff, who also acted as translators.

Wisconsin Farm to Fork Tour Targets Midwest Chefs, Culinary Students

Farm to fork tours are dramatically changing thought leader impressions of the beef industry all across the country. For instance, in Wisconsin this past year two tours helped connect about 110 chefs, nutrition professionals and college and high school culinary students to the state’s beef industry. The tours, conducted by the Wisconsin Beef Council, were partially funded with a grant from the Federation Initiative Fund. Each tour consisted of a visit to three family-owned operations: a dairy, a beef farm and a meat market. At the dairy operation participants were able to learn how Wisconsin’s significant dairy industry connected to the beef industry through cull cows, Holstein steers and bull calves. At the beef farm attendees learned about modern

beef production, including proper feeding/ watering, pasture management, fencing/ housing and the moving and handling of cattle. At the meat market attendees saw carcass fabrication, sausage making and retail packaging. During the tour participants were able to hear from University of Wisconsin and Wisconsin Department of Agriculture staff about beef industry facts and a general overview of the beef lifecycle. Included in each of the tours was a beef nutrition overview provided by WBC Dietitian Sarah Agena, R.D., and a beef trends and flavors presentation by Chef Dave Zino on behalf of the Federation of State Beef Councils. Many of those on the tour shared their experiences with friends and followers on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, creating

have also developed terrific relationships we an additional level of engagement with will be able to utilize down the road.” consumers for the industry. “For many of these individuals, this was a first-time farm experience,” according to Angie Horkan, WBC director of marketing. “And it’s one they will never forget. Based on our surveys we know the attendees got a lot of good information from these events. The tours definitely went a long way to enhance consumer trust in our product as well as our production Wisconsin Farm to Fork Tour participants learn about ultra-sounding the ribeye practices. Finally, they at Steve and Jill Folkman’s C&L Hereford Ranch.

May 2015 Federation of State Beef Councils