Beef Month off to a great start

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Farm Forum

PIERRE — Summer grilling season is just around the corner, and beef enthusiasts are getting an early start this May. South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard has officially proclaimed May as Beef Month and the South Dakota Beef Industry Council (SDBIC) has events and promotions underway to celebrate what’s become a 40-year state tradition.

“This industry plays a vital role for the state’s economy,” said Gov. Daugaard, at the proclamation signing. “After last year’s terrible storm, South Dakotans were reminded of the risks our ranchers face. We respect their resilience and look forward to their continuing recovery.”

“Cattle producers have always been a large part of our agricultural sector and our rural way of life,” added Secretary of Agriculture Lucas Lentsch, who also attended the signing. “This particular Beef Month is special in recognizing our West River ranchers who persevered through last year’s storm.”

South Dakota is home to more than 15,000 ranchers and cattlemen who provide high-quality beef to consumers and has a $2.8 billion impact on the state’s economy. The SDBIC is busy promoting that great-tasting beef with many events on the calendar, including the Second Annual Beef Crawl, which is set for May 12 in Rapid City in cooperation with Ag United for South Dakota.

“This event connects area foodies with local ranchers for a day of dining to socialize and learn about ranching and how beef is raised and cattle are cared for,” said Ron Frederick, SDBIC executive director. “During the Beef Crawl, participants will dine at three different restaurants in downtown Rapid City and experience a beef appetizer, beef entrée and a beef dessert, which is usually quite unique.”

SDBIC also is spreading the positive message about beef as a part of a healthy, well-balanced diet through print and radio advertisements.

“Hood Magazine, a parenting magazine that reaches the Sioux Falls and surrounding area, asked to do an online social media promotion through their magazine during May for Beef Month,” said Holly Swee, SDBIC director of nutrition and consumer information. “They will be promoting family beef mealtime photos through their Hood Facebook, Instagram and Twitter social media platforms. There will be a drawing at the end for those who participated for $100 Beef Bucks. We also have a beef advertisement as well as recipes in the magazine this month. In addition, Black Hills Living Well Magazine has a full article on beef in their May issue.”

SDBIC has also partnered with the Minnesota Beef Council to sponsor radio and TV advertisements in the Twin Cities area to promote beef, as well as sponsoring retail partnerships to help drive beef sales during the month of May.

Finally, beef lovers can participate in Beef Month on social media by using the hashtag #beefmonth and taking part in SDBIC’s Photo-A-Day challenge on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

“Our social media accounts will be actively promoting Beef Month by sharing grilling recipes and nutrition tips,” said Briana Burgers, SDBIC nutrition assistant and director of online communications. “In addition, we are giving away a $100 Beef Bucks Visa Card to a randomly selected winner of our Photo-A-Day contest.”

Check back for updates, photos and information on all of SDBIC’s Beef Month promotions at www.sdbeef.org or on SDBIC’s social media sites including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.