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Galbitang Promotion, Blogger Class Promote U.S. Beef Ribs in South Korea

Published: Friday, April 22nd, 2016

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Working with one of South Korea’s best-known galbitang restaurants and offering a cooking class for food bloggers, USMEF was able to highlight the value and versatility of U.S. beef ribs. The “galbi” promotion, held at 11 Songchu Gamagoll restaurant locations in Seoul, received funding from the Beef Checkoff Program.

Bloggers gather as a chef at a Songchu Gamagoll restaurant in Seoul explains the attributes of U.S. beef ribs

Bloggers gather as a chef at a Songchu Gamagoll restaurant in Seoul explains the attributes of U.S. beef ribs

Galbitang is a variety of guk, or Korean soup, made primarily from beef short ribs, along with stewing beef, daikon, onions and other ingredients. “Galbi” refers to grilled short rib, while the suffix “tang” is another name for soup. This hearty dish is made by slowly simmering short ribs in water, and is often served with a bowl of rice.

Bloggers participating in the USMEF promotion posted photographs and videos of the galbitang class that highlighted U.S. beef short ribs

Bloggers participating in the USMEF promotion posted photographs and videos of the galbitang class that highlighted U.S. beef short ribs

Jihae Yang, USMEF director in Korea, said that unlike other galbitang restaurants, Songchu Gamagoll does not serve only the traditional type of galbitang. Instead, it offers several varieties of the popular dish – all made with U.S. beef back ribs and barbecue ribs.

“The promotion focused on nine galbitangs and asked diners to choose their favorite and explain why as part of a quiz game,” said Yang. “We used this as an opportunity to remind the diners of the huge role U.S. beef plays in the dish’s flavor.”

This poster in Seoul advertises the galbitang promotion and the value U.S. beef brings to the popular Korean dish

This poster in Seoul advertises the galbitang promotion and the value U.S. beef brings to the popular Korean dish

USMEF also conducted a galbitang cooking class for 16 bloggers at a Songchu Gamagoll location. The restaurant’s chef explained the dish and the importance of each of the key ingredients. In the days following the class, 15 of the 16 bloggers posted reviews on the experience.

“Food bloggers, like many galbitang restaurants in Seoul, say that U.S. beef ribs provide excellent flavor at a reasonable cost, when compared to beef ribs from other origins,” said Yang. “After participating in events like this, there is no doubt that U.S. beef ribs are considered to be the core ingredient for popular Korean dishes.”

Yang reported that about 60 metric tons of U.S. beef ribs were used during the promotion and that sales of galbitang at Songchu Gamagoll’s locations increased 39 percent compared to the previous month.