Producer Confidence In Beef Checkoff Growing

A survey of 1,200 beef and dairy producers nationwide was conducted in late December 2010 and early January 2011 by the independent firm Aspen Media & Market Research. This research found that producers’ attitudes toward the Beef Checkoff program are quite favorable and have improved noticeably in the past year. Currently about three in four approve of the program, a five-point positive shift in the past 12 months. There only has been one other time in Checkoff history, where approval levels have increased by at least this amount in a one-year period. The last time approval levels were this high was in 1994. Producers have shown a consistent tendency to rate the Checkoff positively. In the past five years, approval levels have ranged between 68% and the current level of 74%.
“Knowledge about the Checkoff continues to predict favorability toward it,” said Wesley Grau, a cow/calf farmer from Grady, N.M. and chair of the CBB’s Joint Producer Communications Committee (JPCC). “Producers who are ‘very’ or ‘somewhat’ well informed are more likely to approve of the Checkoff, particularly among those who say they are very well informed. Among this group, 86% approve of the program (51% of them strongly), while only 10% disapprove. This finding marks a significant 8% positive shift in the past year.” Grau added that the research “tells me producers are not only getting to know their Checkoff but are also very satisfied with what they learn.”
A large majority, 81%, believes the Checkoff program has helped contribute to a positive trend in consumer demand for beef. A similar number, 80%, believe the program has value in weak economic conditions or are confident (77%) it is on their side during a crisis. And when it comes to their own operations, many producers believe the program has benefited them. A large majority (68%) believe it helps contribute to the profitability of their operations, up sharply from a year ago.
A copy of the research report is available at http://www.beefboard.org:8000/library/files/Beefmemo_1101.pdf.

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