US to put dollars into beef promotion

The American beef industry will spend some US$60 million (£32m) next year to promote U.S. beef consumption at home and abroad.

A plan by the Beef Board Checkoff programme will fund promotion, research and information in the fiscal year beginning this month. Many projects were rejected due to budget constraints, says promotion committee chair Jay O'Brien: "Our final decision is intended to make the best use of each dollar to fund a balanced and aggressive plan of work for 2007."

A total of $7 million (£3.7m) in foreign marketing efforts will focus on various markets including the Caribbean, South America, Europe, Korea, the Middle East and Russia. Some $28 million (£14.9m) will fund consumer advertising, retail and foodservice marketing, veal promotion and new product and culinary initiatives. Almost $8 million (£4.2m) is earmarked for educating consumers on beef nutrition, safety and the benefits of beef in a young person's diet. Funds are also being designated to counter misinformation from anti-beef groups.

Organisations involved include the U.S. Meat Export Federation, Cattlemen's Beef Board, and the American Veal Association among others. All schemes await U.S. Department of Agriculture approval before any expenditure is made.

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