Building Taste for U.S. Beef in Ukraine
The U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF), contractor to the beef checkoff, promoted several cuts of U.S. beef at “American Barbecue Fest,” an annual event that attracts people from across Eastern Europe to a popular resort in Truskavets, Ukraine. Funded by the USDA Market Access Program (MAP) and the Beef Checkoff Program, the promotion closely preceded a series of U.S. beef retail campaigns in Ukrainian cities. These promotions were funded by the Texas Beef Council.
American Barbecue Fest, held at the Mirotel Wellness Center, offered a variety of American-style dishes featuring U.S. beef as the centerpiece.
U.S. beef is regularly served on the Wellness Center buffet and on the menu of the attached Bellini restaurant.
“This venue definitely attracts USMEF’s target audience – consumers with a high level of purchasing power who arrive not only from across Ukraine but also from Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Belarus and other countries for vacations and long weekends,” said Galina Kochubeeva, USMEF representative in the region. “The goal for USMEF is to introduce the taste of U.S. beef to the people who attend American Barbecue Fest or visit the Wellness Center with the expectation that they will return home and begin purchasing U.S. beef on their own for family dinners and special occasions.”
Texas-style chuck and brisket with classic barbecue sauces was created for American Barbecue Fest by the Wellness Center’s chef.
“We combined tastings with useful facts about the U.S. red meat industry and American barbecue traditions,” said Kochubeeva. “There were culinary competitions and quizzes, U.S. beef banners and placards, menu inserts and several other items on display to help guests gain an understanding of U.S. beef and allow them to learn more about buying U.S. beef products.”
USMEF teamed with Metro Cash & Carry Ukraine to conduct U.S. beef tastings at four of the chain’s most successful outlets – two in Odessa, a port city and tourist center, and one each in Dnepr and Chernovtsy, two large industrial cities.
Chefs in the region who are already working with U.S. chilled beef were invited to grill U.S. beef steaks for tastings held outside the Metro Cash & Carry outlets. Educational materials on U.S. beef and recommendations for handling and cooking U.S. beef cuts were distributed to customers who visited the promotional stands.
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