Industry Information

Flexing Their MBA Muscles

Graduates of the checkoff’s Masters of Beef Advocacy (MBA) program recently engaged in two highly influential beef-advocacy campaigns: the 30-Day Protein Challenge and Beef Quality Assurance promotion. Each campaign targeted the nearly 7,000 MBA graduates toward two separate goals: The Protein Challenge campaign encouraged MBA grads to complete the 30-Day Protein Challenge and discuss their impressions and results with their peers, colleagues and family members. The checkoff also provided them with infographics, talking points and fact sheets to share. More than 400 MBA grads signed up to complete the challenge, and a large majority reported via a post-campaign survey that they plan to keep incorporating the tenets of the challenge into their diets. The second campaign drew more than 150 MBA grads to complete Beef Quality Assurance training at no charge, thanks to a donation from Boehringer Ingelheim. Afterward, more than half of them said they shared their thoughts about the importance of BQA to the beef community online via their social networks and encouraged other producers to get certified.

Providing Perspective on Beef Safety

On Monday, Aug. 24, Consumer Reports released “How Safe is Your Ground Beef?,” According to its press release, Consumer Reports tested more than 400 pounds of conventional and “sustainable” beef (which they defined as organic, grass-fed and/or raised without antibiotics) from throughout the United States, and suggested that they found bacteria, including antibiotic-resistant bacteria, in some of the samples. The report attempted to show a link between antibiotic resistance and antibiotic use in conventionally raised cattle, and further recommended that consumers buy organic, grass-fed beef for the safest beef possible. The checkoff issued a media statement from scientists discussing beef safety, sustainability and antibiotic use in cattle to help clarify misinformation from the report, and lined up media interviews for publications including, Drovers, the NBC Today Show, and others. And after release of the Consumer Reports study, traditional- and social-media coverage quickly leveled off, with no signs of negative consumer sentiment or reactions to date.

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