Beef checkoff celebrating 25 years of programs
The Beef Checkoff Program is celebrating 25 years of successful programs that have helped build consumer demand for beef. Since its inception on Oct. 1, 1986, the Beef Checkoff Program has provided a framework for a coordinated state and national plan in research, promotion and education.
Established as part of the 1985 farm bill, the checkoff assesses $1 per head on the sale of live and equivalent on imported cattle. The program became mandatory following approval from 79 percent of beef producers in a national referendum. In Texas, there was an 89 percent approval on the vote.
Administered by the Cattlemen's Beef Board, with oversight provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the beef checkoff process starts at the state level. Qualified state beef councils collect the dollar and retain control of 50 cents for use in-state, while 50 cents is remitted to the national program. More than 600 producers sit on state beef council boards and play a key role in directing state and national programs.
"The whole is truly greater than the sum of its parts and the beef checkoff allows us to do things collectively which we would not be able to accomplish individually," said Roger Clift, Texas Beef Council chair and cattleman from Spearman. "As we look back on the past 25 years Texas farmers and ranchers should feel good about their program and the many successes it's experienced. The beef checkoff can return more than $5 for every $1-per-head investment."
On the state level, Texas Beef Council is governed by a twenty-member board consisting of individuals from across the state representing various segments of the cattle industry. Checkoff dollars may be invested in areas such as promotion, research, consumer information, industry information, foreign marketing and producer information.
"During its 25-year history, the Beef Checkoff Program has had many successes and I envision it will continue to serve as a catalyst to build beef demand both in the domestic and international markets," said Richard Wortham, Texas Beef Council executive vice president. "The checkoff has turned the $1-per-head assessment into opportunities for our industry to build demand and enhance producer profitability."
Headquartered in Austin, Texas Beef Council conducts the $1-per-head checkoff program for Texas beef producers. Its mission is to increase beef demand in the state through programs of beef promotion, research and education. TBC also helps fund national and international beef checkoff programs to increase marketing opportunities for the entire U.S. beef industry. For more information on this and other checkoff-funded programs, please visit www.texasbeef.org or call 800-846-4113.