CAB’s John Stika: Strengthening Consumer Trust Increases Beef Demand

Click here to listen to Ron Hays talk with John Stika about Certified Angus Beef.

Senior Farm and Ranch Broadcaster, Ron Hays, is visiting with the President of Certified Angus Beef, John Stika, about CAB continuing to build trust with beef consumers and build on their brand.

“It (2022) was the second-best year we ever had in our history, and so we feel really fortunate,” Stika said. “The cattle industry is going through a lot of dynamics in the market, weather related, you know we were seeing cow numbers decline because of drought.”

Amid concerns, Stika said demand for beef is as solid as it has ever been.

“It is an industry now that is as aligned with consumer demand from a quality standpoint as it has ever been, as well,” Stika said. “I think the year we had in ’22 is a reflection of that, so demand doesn’t solve every problem we have, but it sure solves a lot of them.”

Stika said Certified Angus Beef remains extremely optimistic about what 2023 holds.

“Consumer demand continues to evolve all the time, but I think this is good news for cattlemen, because I know they hear a lot about sustainability, they hear a lot about the need for validation for what they do on the ranch, and I’ll talk a little bit about that, but first and foremost I think as a cattlemen, we all need to feel really good that consumers love the taste of our product,” Stika said. “At the end of the day, the thing they value most is that satisfaction when they spend their hard-earned dollars on a great piece of beef and it’s going to perform as they expect.”

The trend of consumers wanting a great tasting beef, Stika said has been extremely constant for the past 40 years.

“Where we are beginning to see an evolution in consumer demand is in that area of understanding,” Stika said. “They have more interest in our industry than they ever have, but they don’t necessarily have more understanding than what they have had over the last several decades.”

Providing consumers with more insight on how the cattle are raised, handled and managed, Stika said, as well as how well the land is taken care of, will only increase that consumer trust towards cattlemen as well as strengthening the demand.

“They are interested in what we do, and they want to understand more about how we do it so they can continue to buy our products and Certified Angus Beef with trust, and know that we are asking them to pay more money for something they should value even more than they do today,” Stika said.

Stika also talked about encouraging individuals whose cattle are qualifying as Certified Angus Beef to also receive their Beef Quality Assurance training.

“Beef Quality Assurance training is something that is readily available to everyone in the industry,” Stika said. “We have all helped fund that through the Beef Checkoff over all these years, and it seems, I think, to many cattlemen, rather elementary that these are things that we already do, but it is interesting- consumers look at Beef Quality Assurance training and cattlemen’s effort to become certified as validation that we are in fact treating the cattle the way we say we treat them and the way we want to treat them to maximize the animal’s welfare, but also maximize the value and return to the operation.”

Certified Angus Beef has a meat science lab and culinary facility at their headquarters in Wooster, Ohio that allows the industry to provide consumers with a cutting-edge beef product.

“We have a 7,000 square foot culinary center there in Wooster, Ohio and would love to have people stop by if they are ever in our neck of the woods there in the northeast part of the state,” Stika said. “It is a great opportunity for us to walk everyone who is selling Certified Angus Beef at food service or even at retail through the things that make the brand unique.”

The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Ag Network and is a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR 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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