Producers Talk About the Checkoff

Jana Malot, Pennsylvania

My name is Jana Malot. I live in Harrisonville, Pa., with my husband Clem. We run our operation called Uncle Clem’s place. We run a cow calf operation consisting of Short Horn, Short Horn cross with Angus cows and produce feeder calves that go in to feed lots to be finished as well as we offer a few grass fed beef that we raise here on site for locals that, that are interested in that and maybe from time to time sell a calf for a 4H or FFA project.

Jana Malot is a member of the Cattlemen’s Beef Board (CBB). She says one responsibility of CBB is to make sure checkoff dollars are used to safeguard the image of beef. “There are a lot of myths about beef. It seems consumers try to find information and they don’t always go to reliable source to get their facts on the way our commodity is produced,” says Malot. “So the beef checkoff does a lot to have websites available like for the consumer to find out, you know, what is the true way that beef is produced and handle to reach, to reach their table for their families.”

The checkoff is especially focused on reaching millennials with credible information about beef production, safety and nutrition. And the checkoff focuses on delivering this information to millennials via the Internet, Malot says.

Watch JanaClick here for the full video from Jana’s cow-calf operation.

Joan Ruskamp, Nebraska

"I’m Joan Ruskamp from Dodge, Neb. My husband and I have J&S feedlot:  it’s a cattle-feeding business and a farm. We started this farm in 1981 when we got married.

Steve and I take a great deal of energy and time in to providing good feed for our cattle. Before our cattle arrive, we’ve worked with a nutritionist to help us formulate a ration that will meet the needs of that animal. For example, when cattle first arrive at our yard, they weigh about 600 pounds. They’re going to need some time to grow their frame so their ration will include more hay and less corn. All of our cattle receive corn, alfalfa hay, corn stalks and a by-product of ethanol which is called distiller’s grain.

One of my jobs on our feedlot is to walk pens every morning. Every feedlot across the country has people either walking or riding horses and what we’re doing is looking at every animal, getting them up and making sure that they’re healthy.

The beef checkoff is more important than ever right now. We have consumers who are questioning our practices and even if beef is necessary in the diet."

Watch JoanClick here for the full video from Joan’s feedlot.


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