Barb Downey, Chair of the Kansas Beef Council

(Jamie) Thanks for staying with us. Now let’s join Duane and Barb.
(Duane) Duane Toews joining you once again with AGam in Kansas and while in San Diego with the Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show, a chance to catch up with Barbara Downey from Kansas, Chair of the Kansas Beef Council for the state of Kansas. But Barb, you’ve certainly got some additional responsibilities while you are in San Diego as well. (Barb) I did. They really…some opportunities presented themselves and I am fortunate to have been able to take advantage of them. I am now a member of the Beef Promotion Operating Committee for the Federation side. That is the entity charged with appropriating funds, Checkoff spending funds. And I am also the NCBA Region VII Vice President from the Federation side and of course, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association – NCBA, the Policy arm of the cattle business. (Duane) We think about those opportunities, they don’t always come up and come around to have an opportunity to step into some of those leadership roles. It is a big step though and a time commitment. Those individuals that serve on those committees take that job very seriously. (Barb) They do and it’s really important to all of us as cattle producers, both the Checkoff side and Policy side. They affect whether we realize it or not, what we do day-to-day and the climate that we operate in as cattle producers. (Duane) There always are those individuals that maybe don’t understand that there is a delineation between Policy and the Checkoff side, certainly they mirror each other because the ultimate goal obviously is to represent cattlemen and the beef business as best they can, but there is separation. (Barb) There is very clear and definite separation of those and that was defined by the 1985 Order, Act and Order that created the National Beef Checkoff. And we do a really good job as an industry in utilizing the complimentary functions of both organizations, while maintaining a very clear and definite firewall, so that we are using those producer dollars absolutely properly. (Duane) We think about the ultimate goal of that from the Checkoff side is promotion, consumption, research, all those kinds of things that ultimately drive the individuals out there to desire the product that we raise. (Barb) Yes we do. It’s a very well coordinated effort. It’s what seems to be a large amount of money, about $39-$40 million dollars, but at the end of the day when you look at the funding our competitors or maybe our antagonistic entities have, it’s a drop in the bucket. So, I am very appreciative of the job that has been done by other cattlemen and women before me in making sure that we are really using those dollars in a very effective manner. And I hope to continue to watch those dollars very carefully for all of us. (Duane) Our thanks to Barb Downey from Kansas joining us at the Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show in San Diego. Jamie, we’ll send it back to you. More AGam in Kansas.
(Jamie) Don’t go away, next Kent Askren brings us this week’s KFB Legislative Update.

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