Beef Checkoff Finds Ways to Keep Programs Level in Times of Lower Cattle Numbers

Listen to Ron Hays talk with Greg Hanes about Beef Checkoff dollars at work.

Senior Farm and Ranch Broadcaster, Ron Hays, is talking with the CEO of the Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion Board, Greg Hanes, about planning for the year ahead with fewer Checkoff dollars available.

While high cattle prices are cause for celebration, Hanes said the cattle numbers are much lower, and it doesn’t look like the rebuilding phase will begin anytime soon. To learn more about the work underway from the Beef Checkoff, visit

“That does make it a challenge on the Checkoff side because with less cattle we have less Checkoff dollars,” Hanes said. “On the positive side to that, the last few years as we were kind of going through more liquidation, we were actually getting higher collections than we anticipated during those few years, so we were able to hold some back in anticipation that this would be happening.”

Due to higher collections in years prior, Hanes said the Checkoff has been able to spread out funding across several programs and keep them level.

“As we are contracting for these programs, you have got staff, and all this, not knowing what your budgets are going to be or if they are going to drop really low in one year, or if you are going to have to get rid of people, and I think this will help keep things a lot more stable and keep those programs going along at a pretty consistent level,” Hanes said.

One benefit of higher interest rates, Hanes said, is that the Checkoff has been able to generate extra revenue during this time of lower cattle numbers. Regarding headwinds in the international markets, Hanes said the biggest challenge in Asian markets is exchange rates.

“Our beef is probably 30 percent more expensive just from exchange rate if you compare it to several years ago, plus with lower demand and higher beef prices, that kind of compounds it,” Hanes said.

In markets like Mexico, for example, Hanes said they are starting to pick up the pace and grow. While exports are down from one or two years ago, those years were record export years.

“We are down from the highs of all-time, but it is still pretty good,” Hanes said. “If you compare to five or six years ago, we are still beating all of that.”

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.

Verified by MonsterInsights