After a five-year hiatus, USMEF-ASEAN is re-launching the American Beef Club in the Philippines. An appreciation dinner and awards ceremony was recently held at the Fairmont Makati Manila. Funding for the event was provided by the Beef Checkoff Program and the USDA Market Access Program (MAP).
The American Beef Club was first started in the ASEAN region in the late 1990s. Since the last event was held in the Philippines in 2009, there have been major changes in the landscape of the Philippine foodservice industry, prompting the return of the American Beef Club. To participate, restaurants must serve at least 80 percent U.S. beef. USMEF currently recognizes 11 restaurants from across the Philippines as members.
Attendees at the appreciation dinner and awards ceremony heard from Ralph Bean, agricultural counselor with the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) in Manila. (Joycelyn Claridades, FAS marketing specialist, also attended the event.) The group had a chance to network with other club members and with active U.S. beef importers. A four-course meal featuring U.S. rib fingers, short ribs and ribeyes was paired with California wines supplied by Happy Living Wines, a Philippine importer of U.S. wine.
“We are thrilled to have the American Beef Club back in service,” said USMEF-ASEAN Director Sabrina Yin. “This is such a unique way to connect restaurant owners and operators with U.S. beef importers and to celebrate the taste and quality of U.S. beef being served at these restaurants across the Philippines.”
American Beef Club members received a new wall plaque, table top plaque, certificate and specially designed aprons. Restaurateurs were encouraged to display their plaques to help strengthen customer confidence in the quality of U.S. beef.