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May 24, 2018
The national beef checkoff was a sponsor of two new channel influencer conferences this spring, reaching more than 70 channel influencers in the New England and mid-Atlantic regions through beef cooking and cutting demonstrations.
The North American Camp Foodservice Director Conference was held March 27-29 at Camp Chingachgook in Lake George, N.Y., and the Pennsylvania Association of Meat Processors conference was held May 11-12 at the Penn Stater Conference Center in State College, Pa.
Beef checkoff executive chef Dave Zino attended the Camp Foodservice Director Conference and conducted a 60-minute educational session, titled “Heating up the Camp Fire with Beef,” where he demonstrated three youth-friendly ground beef recipes featured on the Beef it’s What’s for Dinner website. Zippy Beef Alphabet Soup, Santa Fe Corn Chili and Personal Beef Pizzas were on the menu for Zino’s beef demonstration. Additionally, the checkoff-funded school foodservice recipes were a cornerstone at the beef booth, where attendees were invited to assemble their own recipe booklets, including the school foodservice beef recipes.
While ground beef was king of the menu at the Camp Foodservice conference, underutilized and value-added cuts from the beef shoulder clod and chuck roll were the stars of the show at the Pennsylvania meat processors conference. Kari Underly, principal at Range Inc., third-generation butcher and author of the James Beard Award-nominated book The Art of Beef Cutting, conducted a 90-minute educational session exploring the breakdown and utilization of the new value-added beef cuts. Thirty-six percent of session attendees stated that the value-added beef cuts demonstrated from the chuck were brand new to them, and 78% of session attendees rated the beef checkoff-funded educational materials they received at the conference a five out of five.
After the two conferences, Christie Brown, director of marketing with the Northeast Beef Promotion Initiative, a contractor to the beef checkoff program, said, “Whether we’re highlighting fresh and unique ground beef recipes to offer new menu solutions for camp foodservice directors or helping meat processors navigate the alternative ways to break down the beef chuck to merchandise the value-added cuts, it’s always exciting to extend what the beef checkoff has already invested in with the new channel influencers here in the Northeast region.”
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