The U.S Beef Check-Off Program was started in the nineteen eighties as a producer funded marketing and research program that assesses one-dollar per beef animal at the time the animal is sold.
The money collected is used for marketing, research, and education, but with today’s smaller cow herd, there simply isn’t as much money being raised. That led to a referendum on whether or not Texas beef producers wanted to create a Beef Check-Off of their own, which passed earlier this year. Jason Bagley works for the Texas Beef Council.
“They will start collecting the dollar on October one, the dollar will begin being collected at the same collection points as in the past, and dollars can start being spent on January one.”
The lower cattle numbers we’ve experienced in recent years have had a tremendous negative impact on funds available for them to operate.
“I know that it’s going to really help us get back hopefully to where we were years ago with the dollars that we can utilize to really enhance the programs that we are already doing and really focusing on, not just consumers in general, but really those consumers that have a lot of influence on others. That’s really our target audience now, that nutrition and health involved influencer, and it’s really going to help us focus on them even greater, I think.”
Texas A&M Agrilife Extension’s Beef 706 is a program for beef producers that is funded by the Texas Beef Council.
“Programs like this Beef 706 really help them understand what happens to their cattle as they leave the ranch and puts them in the perspective of a feed yard operator, and of a packing plant, and also of a retail and a food service operator, and helps them understand where the value comes from, from the carcass, and from those cattle, and not just domestically, but also internationally, you know, when we can get back there and see some of those cuts that we don’t use here in the domestic market, but we can sell for a real nice price internationally.”
The participants in last month’s program were a young group.
“That’s really been one of our focuses, is to make sure that we’re engaging the younger producer. All producers need to tell their story, but that young producer needs to stay engaged, tell their story, and to tell it in a social media area that we as older producers may not be good at.”