Beef producers continue to voice support for the national Beef Checkoff Program, according to a recently completed independent survey.  Seventy-two percent said they either strongly approve or somewhat approve of the program.  That’s up from 70 percent in July 2004 and on par with a 10-year high of 73 percent in January 2005.

The telephone survey was conducted for the Cattlemen’s Beef Board by Aspen Media and Market Research, Boulder, Colo., between June 26, 2005 and July 9, 2005.  Similar research is conducted every six months to determine the level of producer support for, and concerns about the Beef Checkoff Program and its efforts to increase consumer demand for beef.

Beef Board Chairman Al Svajgr said the survey uncovered some inconsistencies that the Board would evaluate.  Among those is that while 72 percent of producers express support for the program, an even greater number (74 percent) believe the checkoff has contributed to the positive growth in beef demand.  He pointed out that support for the checkoff has never fallen below 60 percent since the program’s inception in 1987. 

“Our role as the Cattlemen’s Beef Board is to effectively address consumer demand for beef,” Svajgr said, “and this survey shows that three of four beef producers recognize our efforts in this area.”

Svajgr said the survey found that 17 percent of respondents disapproved of the checkoff, either somewhat or strongly.  Another 12 percent were undecided or neutral.  This compares to 18 percent who disapproved of the checkoff and 10 percent who were undecided or neutral in January.

Results of the survey, which has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.8 percent, were presented to Cattlemen’s Beef Board members and other participants of the Cattle Industry Summer Conference in Denver July 26-29. 

The recent survey also found that the awareness level of the checkoff continues at high levels.  Only nine percent said they had never heard of the checkoff, compared to 21 percent in the summer of 2002.  Sixty-nine percent said they were at least somewhat informed of the program, compared to 55 percent in 2002.

The semi-annual survey of 1,225 producers is demographically representative of the various types of U.S. beef, veal and dairy operations in the United States, based on the 2002 Agricultural Census.