Contact: Kylie Peterson, Director of Marketing and Communications, Iowa Beef Industry Council, 515-296-2305
Beef producers in Iowa are helping salute a program achieving major milestones in beef advocacy across the country. The Beef Checkoff-funded Masters of Beef Advocacy program celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2019 by welcoming its 15,000th graduate. The MBA program, which many Iowa producers have completed, was created by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, a contractor to the Beef Checkoff, to equip and engage beef industry advocates around the country, helping them communicate about beef and raising cattle. It is one of the strongest beef advocacy efforts in the industry.
“The beef industry’s MBA program has been a tremendous asset in our efforts to better inform consumers and thought leaders about our industry and its products,” says Chris Freland, Iowa Beef Industry Council (IBIC) Executive Director. “In Iowa we recognize the value of MBA’s outreach tools, and many of our producers are taking the next step by using them to communicate with interested consumers.”
A self-directed online training program managed by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, a contractor to the Beef Checkoff, MBA requires students to complete five free online lessons. Once the lessons have been completed, advocates use their boosted knowledge and communication tools to conduct their own outreach. Graduates are also invited to join the Masters of Beef Advocacy Alumni Facebook group, a virtual community for MBA graduates where they gain access to continuing education and the latest advocacy resources.State training workshops also offer advocates in-depth training, communication skills and provide greater confidence to successfully engage with consumers. More than 70 such workshops and presentations, conducted by NCBA, a contractor to the Beef Checkoff, reaching more than 3,000 beef advocates, were completed nationwide in 2018. Each year, advocates reach tens of millions of consumers as a result of their advocacy efforts.
“Having a dedicated, trained and passionate team to carry our message is more and more important as the level of interest among consumers about what we do and why we do it increases,” says Kylie Peterson, IBIC Director of Marketing and Communications. “MBA is a great tool we have been able to use in Iowa to better communicate with consumers and help ensure they have an accurate and fact-based understanding of the beef industry. Ranking third in the nation for total MBA graduates, I commend the more than 1,000 Iowa producers who have chosen to equip themselves with the tools available to feel confident in sharing beef stories on social media and in their communities.”
The MBA program is open to everyone, and there is no cost to participate. To enroll or find out more about this beef checkoff-funded program, go to MastersOfBeefAdvocacy.com.
About the Beef Checkoff: The Beef Checkoff Program was established as part of the 1985 Farm Bill. The checkoff assesses $1 per head on the sale of live domestic and imported cattle, in addition to a comparable assessment on imported beef and beef products. States may retain up to 50 cents on the dollar and forward the other 50 cents per head to the Cattlemen's Beef Promotion and Research Board, which administers the national checkoff program, subject to USDA approval.
About NCBA, a Contractor to the Beef Checkoff: The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) is a contractor to the Beef Checkoff Program. The Beef Checkoff Program is administered by the Cattlemen’s Beef Board, with oversight provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
About the Iowa Beef Industry Council: The Iowa Beef Industry Council is funded by the $1-per-head National Beef Checkoff Program and the $0.50-per-head Iowa State Beef Checkoff. Checkoff dollars are invested in beef promotion, consumer information, research, industry information and foreign market development, all with the purpose of strengthening beef demand. For more information, visit www.iabeef.org.