Purchasing power among Hispanics in the U.S. grew at a compound annual rate of 7.5% from 1994-2004, compared to the 2.8% annual growth for total U.S. disposable income, reports the Detroit News.

In fact, Latinos in 2004 are expected to wield nearly $700 billion in buying power in the U.S. That figure is projected to hit $1 trillion by 2010. That kind of surge in purchasing power has everyone from soda makers to beef marketers angling for a piece of the pie.

"Certainly, the beef industry, in general, and the Cattlemen's Beef Board (CBB) and state beef councils, in particular, are aware of the importance of the growing Hispanic market and are addressing those needs, along with the needs and demands of other consumer sectors," says Diane Henderson, communications manager for the CBB, the group charged with administering the national beef checkoff program.

Henderson tells BEEF Cow-Calf Weekly that the checkoff program has produced a variety of "tear pads." These are tablets of two-sided sheets with Spanish educational messages. They are made available to individuals, educators, medical representatives, etc., anyone who would like them, she says. The sheets provide such information as:

  • Nutritional values and information about particular beef cuts.
  • Translation of beef-cut names from English to Spanish to aid in retail or foodservice purchases.
  • Information about infant and child nutrition needs.
  • Information about "pre-teen" or "tween" nutrition and exercise needs and the role played by proteins, including beef.
  • Spanish-language info on nutritional needs of pregnant women.
  • The importance of exercise to a healthy lifestyle and the benefits of proper nutrition.
Henderson adds that also included in this year's checkoff-funded consumer-marketing program is the development of a retail cut chart with Spanish translation, for use by retailers. That mockup will be presented to the CBB in August, she says, with completion targeted for mid September. She adds that the checkoff program also will seek to focus on some national research on the Hispanic market.