Non-GMO Beef Being Offered
Creekstone Farms Premium Beef in Arkansas City, Kan., announced the launch of their new Non-GMO Project Verified Black Angus Beef. The meat will come from cattle that have never been fed a GMO while being free of antibiotics and supplemental hormones, adhering to the Non-GMO Project requirements. “Creekstone Farms has a reputation for delivering high-quality and consistently delicious premium black Angus beef, and we are pleased to announce an option for consumers who want a Non-GMO Project Verified Beef product,” says Jim Rogers, vice president of sales and marketing for Creekstone Farms. The company’s Non-GMO Verified Beef Lover’s Package can be purchased directly through their website for $150. The new product is being offered in partnership with RR1 Farms and the Non-GMO Project. For more information, visit www.BeefToday.com/Kansas.
Beefing Up College Football Teams
Football season has kicked off, and a couple of Mississippi teams got a boost to their preseason protein intake thanks to their local and state cattlemen’s association feeding them beef. Football players at the University of Mississippi dined on beef and learned about its importance to their diets during the “Beefin’ Up the Rebels” event. Members of the Lafayette County Cattlemen’s Association, Mississippi Cattlemen’s Association and Mississippi Beef Council kept the Ole Miss Rebels well-fed with freshly grilled steaks. Just down the road in Starkville, team members of the Mississippi State University Bulldogs also got their own serving of beef thanks to the Mississippi Cattleman’s Association. The team learned about the beef industry during “Beefin’ Up the Bulldogs.” The team even got to interact with livestock and throw some hay bales. For more information, visit www.BeefToday.com/Mississippi
Millennials Highlight New Beef Market Research
The latest market research from the Cattlemen’s Beef Board offers interesting findings on millennial customers. Did you know 83% of millennials sleep with their cell phone next to their beds? How about the finding that 45% of millennials look to add beef to their plate after finding out how nutrient-rich it is? The total spending power of older millennial parents in 2020 looks to hit $1.4 trillion per year. Overall, more than 90% of Americans consume beef at least monthly. Consumers who eat beef at least three times per week make up 35% of the U.S. population. For more information, visit www.BeefToday.com/Cattlemens_Notebook.
A study by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service found 75 sale barns ceased operations between 1969 and 2013. Some of the reasons for the decline can be attributed to fewer cow numbers and the variety of ways to market cattle now. “Obviously we’ve experienced changes in cattle cycles, inventory numbers and how we trade. We have the Internet, video auctions and direct sales. All of that has played a part in how we trade and market cattle,” says David Anderson, Texas AgriLife Extension Service livestock marketing economist. In the 1970s, Texas had a 7-million-head cowherd. Today, it has 4.2 million cows. In 2013, there were 92 auction markets in the Lone Star State compared to 167 in 1969. For more information, visit www.BeefToday.com/Texas.
Beef is Back in School
In Thayer, Neb., school children are getting plenty of beef thanks to area cattlemen who donated beef to the school lunch program. Thus far, the Titan Beef Boosters have pledged 32 head of cattle with an additional $33,000 being donated. It should keep beef on lunch trays for three years. It is estimated the kids will be getting 50% more beef in their diets. It sounds like the students are enjoying the added beef too. “The best, it was good,” says Colter Sinn, a Thayer Central student of his hamburger. For more information, visit www.BeefToday.com/Nebraska.
Ballot Initiative Proposed by Animal Rights Groups
A coalition of animal rights activists, Citizens for Farm Animal Protection, is launching a 2016 ballot initiative campaign to prohibit certain ways of raising livestock, including small cages to house layer hens, gestation crates in pork production and small pens for veal calves. The changes would also ban the sale of animal products from farms in other states that don’t follow the stipulations. Citizens for Farm Animal Protection is supported by the Humane Society of the U.S., Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Animal Rescue League of Boston. For more, visit www.BeefToday.com/Massachusetts.
Tyson Closes Beef Packing Plant
Tyson Foods announced a permanent cease in beef production at the company’s Denison, Iowa, plant on Aug. 14. The plant will still employ about 20 workers at the byproduct rendering system, while the other 400 employees were given the opportunity to apply for jobs at other plants. “The cattle supply is tight and there’s an excess of beef production capacity in the region,” says Steve Stouffer, president of Tyson Fresh Meats. “We believe the move to cease beef operations at Denison will put the rest of our beef business in a better position for future success.” Tyson bought the plant in 2001 from Iowa Beef Packers (IBP), who opened the facility in 1961. For more information, visit www.BeefToday.com/Iowa
State Fair Pits Governor Versus Country Musician
At the Illinois State Fair’s Sale of Champions, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner bought a grand champion steer named Scotty for a record price of $61,000. Rauner’s opponent in the auction was country musician Scotty McCreery, who the steer was named after. Scotty the steer was exhibited by Taylor Donelson, 19, of Clinton, Ill., who was able to coax an additional $1,000 out of Gov. Rauner after he had the winning bid to help break the record set the previous year. Donelson will receive 80% of the sale proceeds, while the remaining money will be split between the Illinois 4-H Foundation and the Illinois FFA Foundation. For more information, visit www.BeefToday.com/Illinois
Vesicular Stomatitis Quarantines
The Colorado Department of Agriculture reports 65 locations in 15 counties are under quarantine for horses, mules or cattle herds testing positive for vesicular stomatitis. The viral disease causes a fever after infection and leads to ulcers or blisters around the mouth of an animal. “This outbreak is not contained to one specific area of the state. The overall number of cases in 2015 is lower than 2014, and we are seeing a more diffuse occurrence across the state,” says Keith Roehr, state veterinarian. Currently, there are no USDA approved vaccines for vesicular stomatitis. If a livestock owner has an animal suspected of vesicular stomatitis, they need to immediately contact their local veterinarian and isolate the animal to prevent the spread. For more information, visit www.BeefToday.com/Colorado.
Wildfires Reach Historic Proportions
Dozens of active blazes are torching the West, threatening many ranches and cattle herds. The U.S. Forest Service shows 74 large active fire incidents on its Internet map. It’s unknown how many cattle have been lost in the fires, but one Nespelem, Wash., rancher lost several cattle in the North Star fire burning on the Colville Indian Reservation. The East Oregonian published a report of a frantic cattle roundup in front of the Grizzly Bear Fire by cowboys and neighbors of the Anchor Bar ranch. The crews saved the barns and homes and now attention turns to 300 cows on a grazing allotment on Forest Service land. For more information, visit www.BeefToday.com/Washington.