The South Dakota Beef Industry Council is launching two new communication initiatives to reach the state's beef producers and consumers.
Checkoff Café, a quarterly newsletter geared toward the beef producers who contribute to the $1-per-head checkoff, and a Beef: the Original Good Stuff sponsorship of Jim Thompson's The Good Stuff radio program are efforts to raise awareness both of how checkoff dollars are being utilized and the pride South Dakota's farmers and ranchers have in the product they produce.
"We're excited about increasing our communication efforts with the state's beef producers and consumers," says Ron Frederick, SDBIC's executive director. "And there's no better time to get these efforts underway than in May, a month set aside to celebrate beef."
Checkoff Café, a four-page newsletter focused on projects funded with South Dakota's checkoff dollars, will be available in print at sale barns around the state as well as through the eight organizations represented on the SDBIC Board of Directors. Producers will also be able to access an on-line version on SDBIC's web site: www.sdbeef.org.
"Our goals are to inform the producers who pay the checkoff of how their dollars are being utilized and to encourage open lines of communication with them," explains SDBIC President and Oacoma rancher Merrill Karlen. "Our number one priority is doing the best we can with their checkoff investment, and we want their input. We think the newsletter is a good way to enhance that conversation."
The newsletter is a quick read of various checkoff-funded programs underway to promote the good taste and value of beef in a healthy diet. It also includes a calendar of beef-related events throughout the state.
Beef producers and consumers across the state will also be hearing a recognizable voice touting beef on select radio stations during May and June—prime months to encourage beef during the grilling season.
Jim Thompson, whose resonant voice has become synonymous with the DeSmet Farm Mutual Insurance Company of South Dakota radio advertisements throughout the years, will be lending his voice to promote beef.
"Jim Thompson has the ear of people in South Dakota because of his voice recognition," says SDBIC Board Member Craig Bieber, Leola, SD seedstock producer and a member of the council's Promotion Committee. The beef spots will tie in with Thompson's Paul Harvey-like short stories called The Good Stuff broadcast on select radio stations across the state. "He has the skill and talent to communicate that good feeling we have in South Dakota about beef being part of our diet and lifestyle. We'll be anxious to get feedback from both producers and consumers once they hear these spots."
Beef producers can contact the SDBIC office at 605-224-4722 to receive the list of stations broadcasting the Beef: the Original Good Stuff advertising spots.