A fence for cows on the American farm. Author: kavaram

Sustainable Beef - Giving Consumers What They Want

Emma Mulvaney, Associate Director of BQA programs at National Cattlemen’s Beef Association | September 14, 2022


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Sustainability is an extensive term, meaning different things to different people. For example, cattle producers might categorize sustainability as environmental stewardship, while most meat-eating consumers define sustainable meat as to how the animal was raised and treated1. We see animal welfare discussions all the time now, on the news, on social media, in conversations with our family and friends and even on product packaging at stores. Forty-one percent of consumers say they have become more concerned with sustainability in the last year2. So now more than ever, it's critical to communicate and demonstrate cattle producer's commitment to how their animals are raised and their dedication to food safety and quality. 


The Beef Quality Assurance Program (BQA) is dedicated to growing consumer confidence in beef. Now in its 35th year, more than 85 percent of all beef raised comes from BQA certified producers. The more cattle producers that get certified – the more validity it adds to the program. Beef Checkoff-funded research revealed that positive perceptions of how cattle are raised improved by 26 points after learning about BQA3


The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) is executing multiple consumer-targeted campaigns through Beef Checkoff funded Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner. to introduce the public to beef producers who make science-driven decisions to keep their herds healthy and happy. A recent “Rethink The Ranch” campaign came to life across YouTube, social media platforms, influencer efforts, radio, ConnectTV and more. A campaign web page featured an interactive map of all 50 U.S. states, each complete with state-specific beef production stories told through the lens of beef families. Overall, this campaign’s messaging reached more than 96 million consumers. 


BQA goes beyond achieving consumer confidence – at its core, it's a science-backed program for producers. Improving cattle management will enhance production efficiency and, ultimately, revenue. Through timely, relevant training resources, producers can improve their herd profitability through best management practices. 


For more information about the Beef Quality Assurance program and to get certified, visit bqa.org


Sources:

1-2:  Sustainably Raised Meat Insights Report, Midan Marketing, July 2021. 

3:  Consumer Beef Tracker, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, 2021.   

Internal links within this article are funded and maintained by the Beef Checkoff program. Outgoing links may be to websites maintained by third parties not funded by the Beef Checkoff.