For nearly 7,500 cattle producers gathering in Nashville this week for the 2014 Cattle Industry Convention, beef exports were a hot topic. With exports setting new records in 2013 for total value ($6.16 Billion) and value per head of fed slaughter ($245), producers are excited about the critical contribution exports make toward their profitability.
“To be very honest, I was not aware of the importance of exports until I became more involved in marketing activities,” said Morgan Evans of Downey, Idaho, vice-chair of the beef industry’s Joint Global Growth Committee. “One of my goals while serving on this committee is to help educate more producers about everything USMEF is doing to promote our product throughout the world.”
Chairman Larry Pratt, a rancher from Eliasville, Texas, convened the Joint Global Growth Committee Thursday afternoon to review 2013 export results and discuss international marketing activities for the coming year. USMEF Chairman Mark Jagels offered opening remarks to the committee, which also received presentations from Dan Halstrom, USMEF senior vice president for marketing and communications, Greg Hanes, assistant vice president for international marketing and Cheyenne Dixon, technical services manager.
Producers were able to learn about global marketing throughout the week by visiting the USMEF booth at the convention’s trade show, where materials were distributed outlining the benefits of beef exports. The convention also provided a great opportunity for USMEF to reach producers across the nation through more than 100 members of the agricultural and business media in attendance. Jagels and Halstrom met with many of these reporters during a Wednesday afternoon media availability, while others stopped by the trade show booth to request interviews. Beef exports were also featured in a television segment Tuesday evening on a special live broadcast of NCBA’s Cattlemen to Cattlemen.
“It’s been an exciting and rewarding week here in Nashville,” said Jagels. “We were able to share a lot of good news about the international markets and explain the USMEF programs and activities that are helping drive that success.”
The convention concluded Friday with annual meetings of the Cattlemen’s Beef Board and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association board of directors.