Research has found that producers’ attitudes toward their beef checkoff program remain stable and are quite favorable. The survey of 900 beef and dairy producers nationwide was conducted in late June 2011 and early July 2011 by the independent firm Aspen Media & Market Research.
Currently about three in four approve of the program, which maintains the five-point positive shift reported in January. Producers have consistently tended to rate the checkoff positively. In the past five years, approval levels have ranged between 68 percent and the current level of 74 percent.
“Knowledge about the checkoff continues to predict favorability toward it,” says Hank Maxey, a cow/calf farmer from Chatham, Va., and chair of the Joint Producer Communications Committee (JPCC).
“Producers who are ‘very’ or ‘somewhat’ well informed are more likely to approve of the checkoff, particularly among those who say they are very well informed. This tells me producers are not only getting to know their checkoff but are also very satisfied with what they learn.”
To that measure, the underlying value of the checkoff remains strong: a large majority (81 percent) feels the checkoff program has helped contribute to a positive trend in consumer demand for beef, 70 percent are confident the checkoff is on their side during a crisis and 66 percent believe it helps contribute to the profitability of their operations.
“A key goal as identified by the JPCC is that farmers and ranchers have a positive view of the way the checkoff is being managed. That they trust in the leadership and the decisions being made about their checkoff investment,” says Maxey. “This research shows that management of the checkoff is viewed favorably with 66 percent saying they believe it is being managed well.”