A Cowboy’s Faith: May Is Beef Month – Osage County Online | Osage County News

A Cowboy’s Faith: May Is Beef Month

A Cowboy's Faith: Click to read more from Frank J. Buchman.“Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner” is recognized by more than 88 percent of Americans.

The advertising slogan was made famous by actor Sam Elliott to promote the consumption of beef.

Launched in 1992 by the National Livestock and Meat Board, the advertising campaign is funded by the Beef Checkoff Program.

May is National Beef Month and Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly made a special proclamation recognizing the industry.

Still, many don’t realize cattle’s impact on the economy, while controversy often continues about the nutritional attributes of beef.

Cattle generate more than $9.85 billion in cash receipts annually representing 46 percent of the Kansas agricultural cash income.

Kansas ranked third nationally with 6.25 million cattle on about 26,740 farms, ranches, and feedlots as of January 1, 2023. That’s more than twice the state’s human population of nearly 3 million.

Beef cattle farming and ranching has a direct output of about $6.3 billion and employs nearly 34,130 Kansans.

Ranked sixth nationally in beef cow numbers as of Jan. 1, 2023, Kansas has 1.32 million head. There are 6.9 million cattle processed annually in the state, ranking second nationwide.

Kansas ranks second in fed cattle marketed with 5.41 million, representing 24 percent of all cattle fed in the United States.

Meat packing and prepared meat products manufacturing make up the largest share of Kansas’ food processing industry.

Responsible for about $12.9 billion in economic activity, this industry provides employment for more than 31,440 people in Kansas.

Beef valued at $1.4 billion represents about 5.6 billion pounds of the total red meat production.

The United States is the world’s largest producer and the second-largest consumer of beef in the world. Americans eat an average of 55 pounds of beef per year.

Noteworthy, Kansas has 45.7 million acres of farm ground, and cattle efficiently utilize grass growing on the 15.5 million acres of Kansas pastureland. Cattle turn these resources into human food sources high in protein and nutrients.

Beef is an important source of nutrients that are vital for supporting people’s good health. It is especially high in protein, vitamin B12, zinc, iron, phosphorus, and selenium.

Other foods, medicines, and soaps contain many derivative products that rely upon the beef industry.

Reminded of Isaiah 25:6: “The Lord Almighty will spread a wondrous feast for everyone around the world with choice beef.”


Frank J. Buchman is a lifelong rancher from Alta Vista, a lifetime newspaper writer, syndicated national ag writer and a marketing consultant. He writes a weekly column to share A Cowboy’s Faith.


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