Iowa Cattlemen Promote May Beef Month

To help keep beef demand climbing, 9 county cattle groups launch a billboard campaign in Des Moines metro area.

Iowa's beef producers want consumers to know the goodness of beef. In an effort to keep beef demand climbing--nine county cattlemen groups have launched a billboard campaign in the Des Moines metro area. Counties funding the campaign are the Adair, Carroll, Dallas, Davis, Ida, Madison, Polk, Ringgold and Sac County Cattlemen Associations and the Iowa beef checkoff.

The promotion features 10 billboards in the Des Moines metro area and include the new "Beefscapes" posters. The billboards in May and June aim to increase beef sales and demand during grilling season. The beef producers involved targeted Iowa's largest consumer market with this goal in mind. The Sac County Cattlemen are so passionate about promoting beef in the Des Moines area they are funding two billboard posters.

"Iowans love to fire up the grill for almost any occasion, from backyard barbecues to tailgating parties. After the long winter, we want consumers to look forward to the warm grilling season ahead," says Terri Carstensen, a beef producer from Odebolt who is an Iowa Beef Industry Council Board member.

Iowa's favorite source of protein - beef

The billboards went up May 12 to honor May Beef Month. This date was chosen because it is before Memorial Day, which is the second most popular day of the year for grilling. "The goal of the billboard campaign is to encourage consumers in Iowa's largest population center to choose beef when grilling and to grill it more often," says Brian Waddingham, director of Industry Relations for the Iowa Beef Industry Council. "I see this as an opportunity to reach out to our consumers and build upon the excitement of the coming grilling season by encouraging the purchase of Iowa's favorite source of protein--beef." Consumer demand for beef remained strong in 2007, with the Beef Demand Index having risen more than 15% since reversing its 20-year decline in 1998. "The news on demand has been good, for sure, and it's very encouraging to see local beef producers promoting their product in Iowa's largest consumer area," says Will Frazee, beef producer from Emerson, Iowa, and chairman of the Iowa Beef Industry Council. The 10 billboards will reach 80% of the Des Moines metro population during the four week promotion and will make over two-million impressions. "We hope this type of exposure will create awareness and make cash registers across the state ring with beef sales," says Waddingham. "Please join Iowa's cattle producers in celebrating May Beef Month and enjoy the high quality, grain-fed beef that Iowa is known for around the world." Producer-directed and consumer-focused, the Iowa Beef Industry Council is funded by the $1-per-head beef checkoff. Checkoff dollars are invested in beef promotion, consumer information, research, industry information and foreign market development, all with the purpose of strengthening beef demand.

For more information, visit www.iabeef.org.

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