New Beef Board chair champions global markets

by Bryan Salvage
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DENVER – Texas cattle producer Dan Dierschke is about one month into his term as chairman of the Cattlemen’s Beef Board (C.B.B.). But his interest in overseas promotion of U.S. beef dates back to his college days, and has continued through many industry leadership positions with the Texas Farm Bureau, Texas Beef Council, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and U.S. Meat Export Federation (U.S.M.E.F.), as well as his time in the C.B.B. leadership.

“International markets have always been a fascination to me,” he said. “When I was in college I had an opportunity to travel.....and had an opportunity to see there’s a great deal out there beyond the U.S. I was even more fascinated when I was serving as the director of the Texas Farm Bureau and we took some international trips, including going to Brazil and China. And when I saw the kind of work our competitors were doing, I saw potential for an incredible market for our product. I think this is reinforced more when U.S.M.E.F. assisted the officers of C.B.B. in traveling into several European countries and into Russia where we can further see the demand that exists for our products there.”

It’s up to producers to make sure their voice is heard in support of promoting beef exports, Mr. Dierschke said. “I think the better-informed producers are very aware of what the potentials for their bottom line is by having exports,” he added. “There are people who, I regret to say, are not as involved in the total picture. And for those, we need to continue our education.

“Our domestic market is basically stagnant and the international market is a place where we can add considerable dollar to our value without changing our production practices very much at all,” he continued. “In terms of the C.B.B. currently, we are facing lower revenues and the competition for the available dollars to promote our product is intense. And it’s going to be the producers who recognize the value of the export market who need to have their voices known. They need to be heard and advocating for that dimension of the market that’s most likely to increase their profits.”

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