Beef Buzz News
Beef Checkoff Releases Comprehensive Report on Beef Demand
Mon, 24 Jun 2013 15:40:04 CDT
Price, food safety and product quality are the most important demand drivers on which the beef industry should focus to have the most compelling effects on beef demand in the long term. Other key drivers include health, nutrition, social aspects and sustainability.
Ron Hays Beef Buzzes with Dr. Ted Schroeder on the latest Beef Quality Report.
So concludes "Beef Demand: Recent Determinants and Future Drivers," a newly released study commissioned by the Beef Checkoff Program to summarize the current knowledge of consumer demand for beef and identify the best opportunities for the industry to influence demand positively. One of the authors of the study is Dr. Ted Schroeder of Kansas State University- he is our guest of today's Beef BUzz.
The report makes five key recommendations for cattlemen to consider in making decisions about how to invest checkoff dollars:
First and foremost, continue to invest in food-safety enhancement and assurances. Consumers demand it, and there is considerable opportunity to positively improve beef demand in the future.
The industry needs high-quality products that offer consistently excellent flavor, color, tenderness, juiciness, etc… and that is offered to consumers in forms they prefer/demand. While development of new products is an important dimension of this, consistency and integrity of product labels is another important component.
Price has been for a long time, and remains, an important driver of consumer purchase decisions. But beef experts indicate that they see little opportunity during the next 10 years for the industry to influence beef prices significantly, especially relative to competing protein prices. Consequently, their recommendation on this front is that the industry work to embrace efficiency-enhancing technology development and adoption that does not negatively impact, and ideally enhances, product quality and safety attributes.
Give continued industry attention to health and nutritional aspects of beef. Beef's advantages with respect to protein content … and perhaps iron and zinc, appear to be opportunities for the industry to continue to develop and promote with consumers. This suggests an opportunity to target younger shoppers with specific positive health and nutritional messages.
Social and sustainability issues – including consumer skepticism about production technology, perceptions that technologies degrade product quality, safety, nutrition, concerns about animal handling, etc… – should not be ignored, as the industry must be vigilant and prepared when these issues arise. Investments to address social and sustainability issues likely will have a lower demand-enhancement payoff than investments in other key areas, though responding to these issues might remain a 'cost of doing business.'
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