Thursday, November 15, 2012

Agriculture Tax Exemption Signup Begins Today

By Dallas Duncan, Georgia Cattlemen's Association director of communications

From left, Georgia Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall,
Georgia Cattlemen's Association Legislative Committee
Chairman Chris Taylor and GCA Executive Vice President
Josh White display their completed GATE certificates

MACON -- Today is the first day Georgia farmers can apply for the Georgia Agriculture Tax Exemption certificates, state agricultural leaders announced at a press conference on Nov. 14.
"House Bill 386 is a comprehensive state tax reform bill. There's a lot more to it than just GATE, but it's one of the best things that we have ever, ever had the legislature do for agriculture," says Rep. Tom McCall, chairman of the state House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs committee. "You can't look up in the sky and dream of any input into production agriculture that's not going to be tax-exempt after Jan. 1 if you have a card."
GATE has been long-awaited in the agricultural community. After several years of "hodge-podge" and "patchwork" agricultural tax exemptions, Georgia's legislature finally passed consolidated exemption laws for all producers earlier this year. The exemptions go into effect Jan. 1, 2013, but only producers who have valid GATE certificates are eligible.
"So, come Jan. 1, if you haven't got a card, you buy a new tractor, you're going to pay sales tax on it. You buy one sack of fertilizer, you're going to pay sales tax on it if you don't have a card," McCall says.
According to the GATE program, products included in the exemption are defined as any agricultural, apicultural, horticultural, silvicultural, viticultural or vegetable product that has been produced or processed in Georgia.
Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Gary Black,
House Agriculture Committee Chairman Tom McCall and
Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall announced the
GATE applications go live today during a Nov. 14 press conference
Georgia producers qualify for GATE if they own or lease land or property from which at least $2,500 in agricultural products are produced and sold annually; if they provide custom agricultural services for hire; if they own land qualified for conservation use property or if they produce long-term agricultural products that don't necessarily have an annual income, such as timber.
Those in the furniture and sawmill businesses do not qualify for the GATE program, and for the most part neither do producers with farms in other states. However, other state residents with farms in Georgia do qualify for GATE, as do residents with farms in both Georgia and another state. There are also refund forms available on the Department of Revenue website for those with GATE certificates who feel they paid sales tax for an item that should not have been taxed -- such as fuel for tractors, for example.
The Department of Agriculture will send out renewal notices at the end of 2013 and subsequent years to remind producers to renew their GATE certificates.

Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Gary Black signs up
for his GATE certificate
Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Gary Black says the process to sign up for a certificate is quick and easy, collecting just enough basic data to help the department keep records for auditing purposes. To prove it to those at the press conference, Black, McCall and Georgia Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall sat down at computers, and five minutes later Black was printing out his GATE certificate.
Up to four copies of the wallet-card sized certificate can be printed, allowing a primary cardholder and three additional users to have one.
It does cost $20 to apply for the certificate online and $25 to do so over the phone. The fee is by law required to go toward the cost of administering the program. For those worried about spending the fee, McCall says they'll see the return on investment after paying about $300 for farm supplies and not having to pay sales tax on it. He says the money farmers save through GATE will get turned around and spent right back into the economy.
Duvall says the GATE program will help make Georgia more competitive, as it applies not only to production agriculture but to agricultural industries as well. 

"[GATE] makes our state a more industry-friendly state and will bring more jobs here to secure the future of Georgia's No. 1 industry," he says.
Some states that border Georgia do offer agricultural tax exemptions, and leaders feared that producers would be willing to drive over the state line to purchase equipment and other farming inputs -- leaving Georgia businesses out in the cold.
"With these tax exemptions ... it's going to balance out," McCall says. "It's going to help keep our equipment and keep them in our area. I can't tell you how good this thing is for us in agriculture."

To apply for the GATE certificate:

  • Visit the official website and apply online
  • Download and mail in a print application from the Georgia Cattlemen's Association website
  • For questions or concerns, call your local Farm Bureau office or 1-855-FARM-TAX between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Volunteer with us this October!

October is an extremely busy month for Georgia Beef Board and Georgia Cattlemen's Association! This October, volunteer help is absolutely essential as two events fall during the same time frame. Staff will split up to cover both, but we need your help to make these events successful!

Oct. 4 - 14
Georgia National Fair in Perry, Ga.
Volunteer help needed in two to four hour shifts. Two volunteers are requested for each weekday morning interact with school children.
GBB is once again setting up The Beef Story display, which takes visitors from farm to fork. The exhibit includes stations on production, the environment, nutrition, food safety, grading and byproducts. This year, GBB partnered with American National CattleWomen to bring new and exciting programs to the exhibit: Representatives from the National Beef Ambassadors and National Beef Speakers Bureau will join the team to assist with hands-on activities.


Oct. 6 and 7
Taste of Atlanta in Atlanta, Ga.
Accommodations will be provided for volunteers who've traveled in from more than 100 miles and who volunteer at least one day.
This is one of GBB's largest consumer events, reaching more than 40,000 people. This year we'll be serving beef brisket samples and handing out recipe and nutritional brochures. The hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. both days. We would like to request volunteers to help grill, assemble and distribute brisket samples.

Oct. 16 - 18
Sunbelt Ag Expo in Moultrie, Ga.
GBB and GCA will set up an exhibit table in the Beef Pavillion area from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. We are looking for volunteers to distribute materials at our booth and talk with farmers, ranchers and youth about our organizations and the beef industry. There is also an opportunity to reach consumers and support the Georgia CattleWomen at their beef promotion booth in the Family Living building.

Volunteer leaders are truly the lifeblood of our organizations, and we could not make events successful and memorable without your help. If you are able to volunteer with us at any of these events, please contact Brooke Williams at or 877-444-BEEF. Thank you so much for your hard work in the industry!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Beef Products, Inc. Files Lawsuit Against ABC News

Lean Finely Textured Beef is back in the news.

Beef Products, Inc., a company that manufactures LFTB, announced yesterday it had filed a lawsuit against American Broadcast Companies, Inc., ABC News, Inc., three ABC News reporters and others for "knowingly and intentionally publishing false and disparaging statements regarding BPI and its product," according to a company news release.

Lean Finely Textured Beef
BPI is suing the parties for false and disparaging statements about LFTB, which caused more than 700 people to lose their jobs when the company closed three of its facilities after public backlash from ABC News reports on LFTB this spring.

According to the release, BPI alleges the parties "launched a concerted disinformation campaign" against the company.

"For more than 30 years, our family has built and operated companies that are committed to providing consumers with wholesome, safe and nutritious beef. We've created thousands of good jobs for Americans and our Lean Finely Textured Beef has made the leaner ground beef the consumers desire more affordable," Eldon Roth, BPI founder and chief executive officer, said in the release. "The blatantly false and disparaging statements made about our lean beef have done more than hurt my family and our companies, they have jeopardized the future of our employees and their families."

According to the release, BPI and other organizations sent ABC News factual information concerning LFTB and its production, including conclusions from the United States Department of Agriculture, the United States Food and Drug Administration and food safety organizations, yet ABC News allegedly "made false, defamatory and disparaging statements" about the beef product. Public reaction to the news reports, which used the term "pink slime" to refer to LFTB, resulted in product sales declining roughly five million pounds per week. The company later closed three production facilities and laid off hundreds of employees. In addition, according to ABC News, several major restaurant chains, grocery chains and school lunch programs announced they would no longer purchase ground beef containing LFTB after the reports aired.

The reports included interviews with former USDA scientists and Kit Foshee, a former BPI quality assurance manager. In an Associated Press story published today, a "whistle-blower advocacy group" that worked with Foshee called The Food Integrity Campaign said in a statement Sept. 13 that "Foshee was fired from BPI because he refused to participate in the company's 'misrepresentation of the product's safety to the USDA and to consumers.'"

The lawsuit counters that, claiming Foshee was fired from BPI "because he disagreed with, and refused to

follow through on, BPI’s decision to promote more rigorous safety procedures in the beef industry."

Amanda Hill, director of The Food Integrity Campaign, said it was only because of ABC News that Foshee and others involved were able to share "their concerns about BPI."

""Doing so took enormous courage for which they should be honored, not attacked," Hill said in the AP story. "We believe that this product is questionable."

In an ABC News story, Senior Vice President Jeffrey Schneider said the lawsuit is "without merit" and will be vigorously contested.

The AP story quotes Bill Marler, a lawyer for Gerald Zirnstein and Carl Custer -- a former USDA microbiologist and federal food scientist, respectively -- as saying his clients were considering a counter-suit against BPI.

"Our view is that the lawsuit against them, especially as public employees doing their job for food inspection, is completely bogus, without merit and frivolous," Marler said.

After ABC News' stories on LFTB aired, BPI reacted by creating the website, which strove to correct and clarify statements made against LFTB.

Dan Webb, chairman of Winston & Strawn LLP, said in the news release that BPI filed suit because its business was "severely damaged" by the conduct of ABC News.

"As a result, we will be asking a jury to award BPI more than $1 billion in compensatory and statutory damages, plus punitive damages," Webb continued.

One of the damages was the public belief that LFTB was unsafe, countered in the lawsuit with the passage, "In more than 20 years, there has not been a single reported food-borne illness caused by LFTB." According to the lawsuit, BPI received "nearly every significant food safety and innovation award" that could be presented to a food producer. In addition, the lawsuit claims ABC News "knowingly misled the public into believing that LFTB was not beef at all, but rather was an unhealthy 'pink slime' 'hidden' in ground beef as
part of an 'economic fraud' masterminded by BPI."

The term "pink slime" was allegedly picked up from Zirnstein, who referred to LFTB as such in a 2002 email sent to colleagues, ABC News reported. However, according to Agribusiness Freedom Foundation Executive Vice President Steve Dittmer in a column published today, "Webb noted that while [former USDA scientist Gerald] Zirnstein has claimed authorship of the pejorative term 'pink slime' that ABC used to smear the product on its broadcasts, he has not seen the email in which the term is alleged to have been copied by Zirnstein ... USDA, on [Aug. 1] informed BPI that it could not locate a copy of any 2002 email that used the term. In addition, USDA said no such email had been previously produced in response to a Freedom of Information Act request."

LFTB is produced by taking beef trimmings from whole muscle cuts and ground beef and further processing them in a centrifuge to remove the remaining fat. The beef that is left is 94 to 97 percent lean. That is put back into already ground beef to make ground beef products leaner, allowing consumers to purchase a variety of lean-to-fat ratio varieties of ground beef, including some as low as 95/5 and 97/3.
This infographic, published online by the group People for the Truth and also on the site, gives an illustrated description of the LFTB production practice:

Because LFTB undergoes further processing and is therefore more likely to contain bacteria, it is treated with a puff of ammonia gas, which combines with the moisture in lean meat to form ammonium hydroxide, a naturally occurring compound in mammals, according to the BPI website. Adding more ammonium hydroxide raises the pH of LFTB, killing any harmful bacteria that could be present.
According to BPI's website, "ammonia-based compounds are naturally occurring and can be found in every component of a bacon cheeseburger," as illustrated by this graphic:

Friday, August 31, 2012

Got Food? Thank a Farmer: By Callie Akins, GJCA Chairwoman

Most people do not know where their food comes from. In fact, farming may be the hardest, most under-appreciated job there is. President Dwight D. Eisenhower said, "Farming looks mighty easy, when your plow is a pencil and you are a thousand miles from a corn field." 

Farming is not easy. Living on a farm and in a farming community, I see farmers working from daylight to dusk and still struggling to make ends meet. However, I would I not trade life on a farm for anything. Yes, the hours are long and the work is hard, but when fall comes around it is always worth it.

Personally, fall is my favorite time of year. Not only because of watching college football on Saturdays, but because it is harvest time. Time to reap what we have sown all year long. Time to find a new little miracle in the pasture every morning and to see trailers leaving the grain fields every afternoon.

Many consumers look at the prices of groceries and think the farmer must be getting rich. President John F. Kennedy said, "The farmer is the only man in the economy who buys everything at retail, sells everything at wholesale and pays the freight both ways." 

Farmers are not getting rich, but most farmers are not in it for the money. They farm because they love it. I know this is true for me at least. Farming is not only a career, it is a way of life. Early mornings checking cows and late nights picking corn are things you come to love. 

So, next time you go to the grocery store and see the prices rising, remember the farmers' prices are rising, too. "Got food? Thank a farmer." That food did not just magically grow and make it on to your plate. Somewhere, someone put their blood, sweat and tears into that crop. 

Callie Akins is a senior homeschool student from Nashville, Ga. She is a past Georgia Junior Cattlemen's Association Convention coordinator and serves now as the GJCA Chairwoman.

Friday, August 17, 2012

GCA Wraps Up First Region Roundup in Calhoun

The annual statewide tour for Georgia Cattlemen's Association staff began Aug. 16 in Calhoun at the Gordon County Extension office.

GCA President Chuck Joiner led the meeting, assisted by Jason Johns, a member of the tour committee, Eddie Bradley, Gary Autry and Ben Hicks. Bradley gave an update on the cattle industry investment working group and Autry, a member of the Tri-County association, reviewed his group's Pay it Forward campaign. Hicks, a chapter relations officer on the 2012 to 2013 Georgia Junior Cattlemen's Association officer team, gave a GJCA update and reported excellent discussion on the future of the cattle business and the importance of youth involvement.

Josh White, GCA executive vice president, says participation was solid. Thirteen of the 16 chapters in Regions 1, 2 and 4 were represented.

"The conversation was positive and lively," White said. "I also want to mention that all three regional vice presidents were a big help, attended and did a great job getting their chapters out. GCA Executive Committee member Dean Bagwell also attended, setting a good example for the EC."

The meeting was sponsored by Barenbrug Seed Company's Mike Lee, and Gordon County 4-H's dairy judging team help serve the meal of brisket and creamed corn casserole. The team recently won the state judging contest and is raising money to help with travel to the national competition.

There are several Region Roundup meetings coming up, and GCA hopes to see many of its members at one of them:

  • Aug. 21, Athens
  • Aug. 28, Camilla
  • Sept. 6, Lyons
  • Sept. 11, Macon

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Juniors Kick Off 2012 - 2013 Year

This week kicks off another exciting year for Georgia Junior Cattlemen's Association. The association achieved many goals during 2011 to 2012, including that of reaching 500 members, a feat everyone is very proud of!

GJCA ended the 2011 to 2012 year with its annual Field Day on July 12 -- PERRY 2012 Cattlemen's Olympics -- which was a wonderfully successful event! Dozens of junior members, friends and volunteers came to Perry to enjoy a day of agriculture-themed games: Corn hole, full-noodle jousting, hula hoop contest, an AG-ility course, stockman's quiz and more. At each station, participants received a stamp on their passport. Prizes were given out for winning certain stations as well as for completing the "Meat Up" ice breaker sheet!

There were also little bits of education mingled in as well. Ronnie Silcox of the University of Georgia did an animal handling demonstration with some help from "cow" Katherine Throne, demonstrating cattle senses, point of balance and movement to the crowd.

Tim Marshall of Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College and Brice Nelson of UGA hosted a seminar on collegiate experiences in agriculture, talking about majors, classes, social opportunities and Greek life. The third seminar was taught by Rebekah Bowen, a graduate of ABAC, UGA and University of Tennessee. She shared ways students (and parents!) can get involved in social media AG-vocacy.

GJCA would like to thank all of its sponsors, volunteers, guest speakers and participants for helping to make Field Day 2012 such a successful event. We hope everyone wears their Field Day shirts, designed by Merritt Daniels, proudly!

Field Day culminated with revealing the 2012 to 2013 GJCA officer team. Congratulations to Callie Akins, chairwoman; Merritt Daniels, field day coordinator; Jordan Harrison, Convention/Summer Conference coordinator; Gibson Priest, chapter relations officer; Walt Lipham, chapter relations officer; and Ben Hicks, chapter relations officer. We look forward to working with you this coming year!

From left: Akins, Daniels, Dallas Duncan (GJCA advisor), Priest, Lipham and Harrison.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

2012 Farm Bill Passes Senate

After several days of debate, a consensus has been reached concerning the 2012 Farm Bill. The bill passed the Senate today by a bipartisan vote of 64 - 35. Both Georgia Senators Saxby Chambliss and Johnny Isakson voted against the bill feeling that it is a "Midwestern Farm Bill" that did not do enough for Southeastern crops such as cotton, peanuts and rice.

Georgia Cattlemen's Association and National Cattlemen's Beef Association were concerned with several of the 73 amendments.

First, we would like to thank every constituent who contacted their senator and shared with them the views regarding the proposed agreement between the Humane Society of the United States and the United Egg Producers. That amendment did not make the cut for Senate debate. For more information on that proposal, read our past blog post here.

Other amendments of note:

  • #2276: To prohibit mandatory or compulsory checkoff programs
    • FAILED 20-79
    • Proposed by Jim DeMint, R-S.C.
    • Opposed by NCBA and GCA
  • #2479: To improve the livestock forage disaster program because of the elimination of NAP from the 2012 bill
    • PASSED voice vote
    • Proposed by Max Baucus, D-Mont.
    • Supported by NCBA and GCA
  • #2289: To reduce the Market Access Program by 20 percent
    • FAILED 30-69
    • Proposed by Tom Coburn, R. Okla.
    • Opposed by NCBA and GCA

Also important are that the Environmental Quality Incentive Program and the research title came through in good shape, according to a message from GCA Executive Vice President Josh White.

"I was pleasantly surprised by the bipartisan efforts made to move this bill through the Senate very efficiently and without much partisan rhetoric," Colin Woodall, vice president of government affairs for NCBA, said in today's Beltway Beef newsletter. "Both Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., and Minority Leader Pat Roberts, R-Kan., should be commended for their leadership on this very important piece of legislation. Their transparency and willingness to listen to all vested interests was very refreshing for the National Cattlemen's Beef Association and other like-minded organizations. NCBA stands firm in our commitment to support this legislation."

The Farm Bill now moves on to debate in the US House of Representatives.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

2012 Georgia Beef Month Update

Georgia Beef Month is half-over, but that doesn't mean Georgia Beef Board isn't busy! Brooke Williams, GBB director of industry information, went all over the state in June to promote the beef community and its beef product.

Beef Month kicked off with several media stops, including these on WTOC-TV in Savannah. Part 1 (top) is a sit-down segment where Williams and Georgia Cattlemen's Association Region 12 Vice President Ray Hicks discuss facts about the beef community, and part 2 is a cooking demonstration.

GBB was also in charge of a tour for dietitians and food service personnel that visited Mid-Georgia Livestock sale barn in Jackson, Ga., Honeywood Farms in Barnesville, Ga., and Buckhead Beef. Participants also ate lunch at LongHorn Steakhouse and had a wonderful time learning about the beef industry from the producer, marketing and retail perspectives.

For two Sundays, GBB and GCA staff and volunteers braved rain and heat to serve nearly 1,500 star-spangled cheeseburgers to hungry Braves fans at Turner Field! We would like to thank our partners for these two Beef Up Your Game Plan events: Big Green Egg, Colavita Olive Oil and Publix! Everyone had rave reviews about the burgers and people were excited to see new recipes and possibly win gift cards to the grocery store.

For more information and the latest updates on the activities of Georgia Beef Board, check out their website or follow them on Facebook!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Roger and Janet Greuel, GCA's 2012 Seedstock Producers of the Year

We've already posted about our outstanding commercial cattleman of the year. Today, we want to celebrate our two seedstock producers of the year: Roger and Janet Greuel of Greuel Family Brangus in Brooks, Ga.

Here's the video proclaiming their accomplishment, originally aired at the 51st Georgia Cattlemen's Association Convention & Trade Show and 15th annual Beef Expo.

If you know a deserving cattleman - or producer family! - to nominate for the 2013 awards, download an application here.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

We Need Your Help!

On June 12, US Sen. Dianne Feinstein filed an amendment to the Senate Farm Bill.

This amendment, No. 2252, is joint legislation created by the Humane Society of the United States and United Egg Producers.

HSUS and UEP legislation could be a dangerous precedent for other agricultural industries
Josh White, executive vice president of Georgia Cattlemen’s Association, is putting the call out for YOU to call your state senators and ask them to oppose the amendment. Neither of Georgia’s senators (Saxby Chambliss and Johnny Isakson) have come out publicly with a stance on the amendment, and we are not sure at this time when it will hit the Senate floor for a vote. At the earliest, it could be this Thursday — tomorrow.

Passing this “one size fits all” legislation will take away producers’ freedom to operate in a way that is best for their animals and it will ultimately limit consumer choices and increase food costs for American families. Cattle industry leaders believe such legislation will set a dangerous precedent and will encourage other special interest groups who want to influence animal production practices without scientific bases, resulting in higher production costs and job losses.

Commodity organizations including the Egg Farmers of America, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, National Pork Producers Council, American Farm Bureau and others have serious concerns about any federal legislation mandating production practices.

“Bottom line, we don’t want the federal government passing specific animal production mandates into law!” White said.

To contact Sen. Chambliss, call 202-224-3521 or visit his website.
To contact Sen. Isakson, call 202-224-3643 or visit his website.

We encourage YOU to contact your state senators in Washington. Here’s some bullet points you can share with them:

·      More than 90 percent of all US farms are owned by individuals, families or family corporations. Any legislative mandate will add financial burdens on these family businesses.
·      Government mandates will negatively affect niche producers who receive premiums for their chosen more expensive production practices.
·      The World Association for Animal Health is developing international species-specific animal care standards guided by scientists and veterinary experts. The guidelines are based on outcome requirements, not prescriptive housing, which US industry guidelines are also based on. It is important for US guidelines to be consistent with those of this organization.
·      Farmers recognize and follow their moral obligation to provide healthy and humane environments for farm animals by utilizing the latest research and modern techniques and training.
·      Federally mandated animal welfare production practices in other developed nations haven’t shown a measured improvement in animal welfare. Many of these countries have over-regulated their farmers out of business and are now net importers of meat protein to feed their consumers.
·      Legislation such as this will limit scientific research and industry innovation that could benefit animals.
·      Commodity groups have developed animal care standards, such as Beef Quality Assurance, based on science that are continuously updated and are audited by trained third-party assessors. They can be quickly modified and improved, unlike a legislative mandate.

Additional pertinent information can be communicated via this prepared handout courtesy of NCBA. It’s got great facts about the cattleman’s commitment to cattle care, the effects of the European Union’s mandated production practices and more details on the future of animal agriculture if this legislation passes. Click HERE to access that PDF online.

For questions or assistance about contacting your government leaders, call the GCA office at 478-474-6560 or email

Thursday, May 31, 2012

David Gazda's Letter to the Editor

David Gazda, GCA President-Elect

Below is the letter by Georgia Cattlemen's Association President-Elect David Gazda that appeared in the Athens Banner-Herald on May 29, 2012.

As a local cattleman, I’d like to offer a few facts that the writer of a May 23 letter to the editor headlined “To eat meat or not” may not have understood.

The latest research on heart health and lean beef, by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, presents a new way of thinking: lean beef can be part of a solution to one of America’s greatest health challenges. The Beef in an Optimal Lean Diet (BOLD) clinical study showed that when included as part of a healthy diet, lean choices — such as top sirloin, tenderloin, T-bone steak and 95-percent lean ground beef — can reduce risk of heart disease.

Additionally, a Cancer Detection and Prevention meta-analysis published in February 2009 concluded that there is “no epidemiologic evidence to support a causal association between consumption of red meat or processed meat and kidney cancer.”

And, raising beef is environmentally sustainable. New research published in the Journal of Animal Science shows beef’s environmental footprint is shrinking. Each pound of beef raised in 2007, as compared to 1977, used 19 percent less feed; 33 percent less land, 12 percent less water and 9 percent less fossil fuel energy.

The carbon footprint of beef was reduced by more than 16 percent from 1977 to 2007. This year, more corn was used in ethanol production than for livestock feed. More beef from fewer animals maximizes resources like land and water, while providing essential nutrients for the human diet.

As a local cattlemen, I take pride each day in providing excellent care for my animals so that consumers in Georgia and around the world can enjoy beef that is safe, affordable, healthy and delicious.

David Gazda, Athens
Gazda is a local producer and president-elect of the Georgia Cattlemen’s Association.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Charles Floyd: GCA Commercial Cattleman of the Year

Each year, Georgia Cattlemen's Association selects one commercial producer who stands out from the rest of the herd. This year the honor went to Charles Floyd, a member of the Mid-Georgia Cattlemen's Association chapter. Floyd is from Smarr, Ga., and owns a commercial Angus operation.

This video played at the 51st Annual Georgia Cattlemen's Association Convention & Trade Show and 15th Annual Beef Expo in Perry, Ga., on April 6, 2012.

Charles Floyd, right, receives his Commercial Cattleman of the Year award from GCA Past-President Steve Blackburn

GCA congratulates Floyd on his accomplishment! You can read more about him and his operation, Double F Farms, in the May issue of the Georgia Cattleman magazine.

Monday, May 21, 2012

How to Beef Up Your Beef Month

Georgia Beef Board sponsored a "Beef Up Your Beef Month" promotion and media training for Georgia Cattlemen's Association members on May 19.

Here's some ideas taken from the chapter roundtable discussion on how YOUR association can spread the word about our favorite protein!

  • Marquees are great eye-catchers: Use at a local business or farm bureau
  • Host a Beef Day for a local summer camp or vacation Bible school where students learn about cooking, nutrition and food safety
  • Have a Hamburger Day or ribeye steak sandwich sale
  • Visit a local festival: Ring a cowbell as you walk around and hand out recipe brochures!
  • Start a local CattleWomen's chapter -- the women will talk more!
  • Bring a live calf to a local library or camp to teach about beef
  • Send your junior members to senior centers to talk about beef
  • Help sponsor a "Cowboys for Jesus" vacation Bible school theme
  • Help local Girl Scouts get their Beef badge
  • Bring cattlemen to cookouts and other events: People like to put a face with their beef
  • Have booths at Farmer's Markets, whether it's to sponsor a specific local farmer's product or the association
  • Get at least one member ServSafe certified 
  • Give out gummy hamburgers to kids during events
  • Do a drawing for a sponsored or donated gift, such as a grill or steakhouse gift certificate
  • Utilize members who speak other languages, especially Spanish! They can be great assets if your area has a large Hispanic population at events
  • Buy those red Georgia Beef Month shopping bags to give out or sell at grocery stores
  • Start a chapter Facebook or Twitter account and share GBB and GCA information on it. Even better, make it a chapter officer or specific junior responsibility to update this regularly.
  • Enter local parades with beef floats
  • Sponsor a freezer for a local food bank so it an give away fresh meat cuts
  • Donate processed beef products, such as beef soup, to food pantries. These are easier for people to prepare than fresh beef at times.
  • Sponsor banners and concessions at high school sporting events, and grill hamburgers to sell!
Whatever your chapter does to promote BEEF throughout June Beef Month (or any other time of the year!) be sure to send us pictures and a short write-up so we can include them on our social media pages, website and the Georgia Cattleman magazine.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Welcome to Georgia Beef Blog!

Welcome to Georgia Beef Blog! We're so glad you found us. GABeefBlog will be the news hub for everything happening with Georgia Cattlemen's Association, Georgia Beef Board, Georgia CattleWomen's Association and Georgia Junior Cattlemen's Association.

"Like" our pages on Facebook and find us on Twitter: @GACattlemens and @GABeefBoard. You can also visit our YouTube channel.

We'll use this blog to post relevant stories, links and who knows what else, but our No. 1 goal is to keep you informed of news and recipes from Georgia's beef industry! For questions or post suggestions, contact