Beef Briefs: May 2012

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Date: Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Look for Beef Briefs to be delivered the first of each month – your snapshot of beef checkoff news affecting the dairy and beef industries. Editor’s note: please feel free to use these news items as space allows in your publication or online content. If you would like to expand on a certain topic, please e-mail Melissa Slagle at

In case you missed it…

… Get the latest updates by “friending” MyBeefCheckoff on Facebook or following @MyBeefCheckoff on Twitter.

… Checkoff market research helps understand “millennials” and their relationship with beef.

… Funded in part by the beef checkoff…The Build a Better Burger Contest is now open. Submit your burger recipes for a chance to win $100,000 in the beef category.

BSE Confirmed in California

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) confirmed a positive test result as part of its enhanced surveillance program to test cattle for Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE).

The USDA has confirmed this animal did not enter the human food or animal feed supply and is conducting an investigation to confirm the origin and age of this animal.

The bottom line for consumers remains the same: Beef is safe. Experts in human and animal health agree that U.S. beef is safe from BSE because of the progressive steps taken by the U.S. government over the past two decades. The world’s leading scientists, medical professionals and government officials agree that BSE is not a public or animal health risk in the United States.

Please refer to the checkoff-funded website for factual information.

Producer Profile:  John Schafer, Minnesota

John Schafer of Buffalo Lake, MN, is a Cattlemen’s Beef Board member, vice-chairman of the Joint Product Enhancement Committee, Beef Promotion Operating Committee member, and an NCBA and American Farm Bureau Federation member. He’s also a ‘lifer’ in the cattle business, a fourth generation rancher growing up on a farm that’s been in family hands since 1900.

Read the full story about John here on Cattlenetwork.

Tip of the Month:  Your veterinarian -- a critical partner 

An ongoing relationship with a practicing herd veterinarian is critical to ensuring the safety and well-being of your dairy animals. The checkoff-funded Dairy Animal Care Quality Assurance (DACQA) guidelines  stress the importance of a valid veterinary client/patient relationship (VCPR), which includes your veterinarian making regular herd visits, providing employee training and developing herd management protocols.

Read more here.

Food—every place, any place: Ever changing food distribution

Food distribution is ever changing, with specialty stores, pharmacies and others beginning to add meat products to their offerings.

The beef industry is creating new packaging technologies, size variety, and new preparation methods to meet food distribution needs and consumer demands.

Read the full article in the checkoff’s Beef Issues Quarterly newsletter.

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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 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.
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