Iowa Beef Industry Council Celebrates National Family Meals Month with Hy-Vee Dietitians

Iowa Beef Industry Council Celebrates National Family Meals Month with Hy-Vee Dietitians 

October 22, 2018
Rochelle Gilman, Director of Nutrition and Health, Iowa Beef Industry Council, 515-296-2305

hy pom

Hy-Vee dietitian sharing easy beef recipe with customers for National Family Meals Month promotion in September.  Photo courtesy of Hy-Vee.

AMES, IA - National Family Meals Month took place during September and lean beef was featured as the Hy-Vee dietitian pick of month for the September campaign.  The goal of National Family Meals Month is to have families eat one more meal at home each week.  Research shows children who eat meals together with families have better grades, improved nutrition, higher self-esteem and are less likely to use alcohol and drugs.[1] 

The month-long promotion funded by the Iowa State Beef Checkoff Program involved Hy-Vee store dietitians in 245 retail stores across eight Midwestern states, including the cities of Des Moines, Quad Cities, Minneapolis, Kansas City, Madison, Sioux Falls and Omaha.  Hy-Vee dietitians promoted beef recipes for family meals with TV cooking segments, social media, live Facebook videos and in-store cooking classes, including Simple Fix classes for beef freezer meal recipes. 

On October 15th, Stacey Loftus, Hy-Vee Assistant Vice President, Retail Dietetics, reported a 30% sales increase in Top of Iowa Sirloin steaks and 6.9% sales increase in lean ground beef for September 2018, as compared to September 2017, based on all Hy-Vee stores.  Hy-Vee Beef MealTime Kit sales increased 9% for the month of September, compared to the previous month sales. 

Hy-Vee dietitians, along with state beef councils, also gave away Hy-Vee Beef Mealtime Kit vouchers to families caught cooking beef at tailgates during 14 college and NFL football games across eight Midwestern states. 

“Partnering with state beef councils throughout our eight-state region during National Family Meals Month was a great way to raise awareness about the importance of families taking the time to eat together no matter where they are – even if they are tailgating and are away from home,” said Stacey Loftus, Hy-Vee Assistant Vice President, Retail Dietetics. “Our teams had so much fun awarding beef Hy-Vee Mealtime Kits to tailgaters who were caught cooking with beef at college and professional football games throughout the month of September to emphasize the importance of family mealtime.” 

The partnership with the Hy-Vee dietitians allows the beef message to reach a larger consumer audience in major cities throughout the Midwest.  More than 4 million media impressions were reported including TV cooking segments, social media and newspaper.  

“The promotion with the Hy-Vee dietitians is such a valuable partnership to the beef industry,” said Rochelle Gilman, RD, Director of Nutrition and Health for the Iowa Beef Industry Council.  “Dietitians are a great resource for consumers in the grocery aisle and can provide easy beef recipes and meal solutions for busy families looking for quick, nutritious meals.”  

Beef is a complete, high-quality protein food that contains all the essential amino acids the body needs to support physical activity and a strong, healthy life.[2,3,4]  To find delicious, easy beef recipes for family meals, visit

Columbia University, The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, The Importance of Family Dinners, VII, September 2011. 

² US Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Nutrient Data Laboratory. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 28 (Slightly revised). Version Current: May 2016. Available at: 

³Bonci LJ. Eating for performance: bringing science to the training table. Clin Sports Med 2011;30:661-70. 

⁴ American College of Sports Medicine, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Dietitians of Canada. Nutrition and Athletic Performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2016;48:543-68.  

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About the Iowa Beef Industry Council:  The Iowa Beef Industry Council is funded by the $1.50-per-head 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

HyVee tailgate crasher

Hy-Vee dietitians, along with state beef councils, awarded prizes to tailgaters caught cooking beef at 14 college and NFL football games in 8 Midwestern states.  Photo courtesy of Hy-Vee.