Beef Buzz News
Butler Says It's Time for Beef Industry to Know Their Consumer
Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:21:27 CST
Agriculture has to understand their consumer. At the Ag Issues Forum in Phoenix, held in conjunction with the Commodity Classic, John Butler, Chief Executive Officer of the Beef Marketing Group said today’s consumer is becoming much smarter and much more curious and they are showing an intense level of interest in where their food comes from.
Ron Hays Beef Buzzes with John Butler of the Beef Marketing Group
An addressing consumer demands, transparency has become a buzz word within the food industry. As far as what that means for the beef industry, Butler said we have to accept the fact we live in a “fish bowl”.
“In fact we have to be very, very aware that there’s things we are doing with the products we are producing that we need to be held accountable for,” Butler said.
This includes everything from animal care and handling, to food safety, environmental management, resource management. As participants in agriculture, Butler said those are things we have taken for granted and we can no longer do that.
“Our business, our industry is challenged in a way that we have forever said that we do all these good things and we are stewards of these things we are responsible for, but now we are going to have to be held accountable for them,” Butler said. “In fact we are going to have to face things like verification, so that these practices, these methods, we are not just saying we are doing them, we can have standards set, we can adhere to and agree to."
If a consumer ever questions how their food was raised, Butler said we can say it and prove it with a level of verification behind the product.
Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays interviewed Butler at the Ag Issues Forum, held in conjunction with the Commodity Classic in Phoenix. Click or tap below on the LISTENBAR to listen to the full interview.
Transparency in the cattle industry has been an issue for the last decade since the first of BSE was discovered in the US. Butler said he is personally frustrated that as an industry, we never adopted, accepted or embraced those signals.
“You take individual enterprises like ours and that really focus on understanding their consumer and there is something we can do about it in our little part of the business,” Butler said. “And we can go down this path of getting closer to the consumer and aligning with each segment within the supply chain.”
From the rancher to the feeder to the packer, Butler said we have to work together as an entire system to get the information ultimately to the consumer
The Beef Marketing Group is a producer cooperative with 19 cattle feeding and growing operations in Kansas and Nebraska. The group was established in the late 1980’s. They have been focusing on producing value added beef products that meet consumer demands. This cooperative of cattle operations is coming together to market beef in showing verification back to the consumer.
The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- but is also a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show- and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.
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