Pass It On! Checkoff Support Critical to Beef Industry
The Beef Industry Long Range Plan (LRP) is developed every three to five years and lays out aggressive goals to strengthen the beef industry. As part of this initiative, the Beef Checkoff interviewed cattlemen and women across the country to hear the checkoff is helping them for long-term success on their operations.
AL Bar Ranch of San Antonio, Florida
Bill Barthle, third-generation rancher in San Antonio, Fla., says the Beef Checkoff helps explain to consumers how U.S. beef is produced. He feels increasing consumer knowledge and the demand for beef, along with working to increase producer support of the checkoff will all play a crucial role in passing the beef operation onto future generations.
“One of my main concerns with the Beef Checkoff now is the value of the dollar of the Beef Checkoff. The Beef Checkoff was established in 1985, and the Beef Checkoff dollar now is only worth 41 cents. We need more support because we have to educate the people what is going in the beef industry. We want to educate them about nutritional value of beef,” says Bill Barthle.
“We need the support of the Beef Checkoff to pass this onto the next generation.”
How does the Beef Checkoff Help?
The Beef Checkoff plays an important role growing and maintaining beef demand, thus opening new opportunities for cattle producers to sustain their businesses for generations to come. That includes keeping close tabs on what consumers want in terms of end products, as well as sharing information regarding safe and sustainable beef production carried out by cattle producers — ensuring that’s what they find at the meat case when they go to purchase food for their families.
It’s no small task, but checkoff investments are part of the reason that beef demand has remained strong throughout the extremely tight supplies of recent years. In fact, a study by Dr. Harry Kaiser at Cornell University demonstrates that every checkoff dollar invested has a return on investment of $11.20. That means that every dollar invested by cattle producers returns $11.20 more to an operation than would have received without the checkoff in place.
The Beef Checkoff program was established as part of the 1985 Farm Bill. The checkoff assesses $1 per head on the sale of live domestic and imported cattle, in addition to a comparable assessment on imported beef and beef products. States may retain up to 50 cents on the dollar and forward the other 50 cents per head to the Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion and Research Board, which administers the national checkoff program, subject to USDA approval.