A slice of prime rib (ribeye) as the finished product, ready for consumption!
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Every number has a story: $4.52

Turkey or ham.

Turkey or ham.

Turkey or ham.

If 30% of consumers consider beef roast as “appropriate for a holiday meal” (according to recent polling), why in a family of beef producers do I have turkey and ham at every holiday gathering?!

The likely answer is tradition. Although there’s a bright spot (and perhaps opportunity?) for the beef community: 30% of survey respondents also say they want to try something new for the holiday meal.

But we’re up against more than just tradition as illustrated by $4.54.

That’s the 2015 year-to-date difference in the retail price per pound of turkey versus beef. If you’re a consumer and see $1.52/lb. versus $6.06/lb., what would persuade you to pay almost four times more for beef?

Beef vs Turkey Retail PricingWe’ve said this many times over, but we can’t beat—or even compete—with pork and poultry on price. We must provide a distinctly different eating experience and we must do it every single time.

If not, why wouldn’t shoppers substitute with something that could be both less expensive and more predictable?

Steve shared ag economist Scott Brown’s work earlier in this series. I remember putting a big ole star in my notes as he addressed our Feeding Quality Forum crowd in 2014 and said, “Statistically pork and chicken make better substitutions in the Select market. We don’t see the same substitution competition for Choice and Prime.”

So what does that mean at the ranch level? If you want to make sure your product is seen as a splurge that’s worth it, you must pay attention to final carcass quality. Genetics and management must line up. The details matter. You must have a plan and implement it.

Because you don’t want to sell the most expensive chicken alternative on market.

Something to think about while you’re perhaps getting your fill of turkey today.

On behalf of the entire Black Ink team, Happy Thanksgiving!


PS–This is just one number in our month-long series. Check out posts that range from the number of CAB employees to the ideal backfat target:

Day one: $6.93

Day two: 2.5 million

Day three: $204.10

Day four: 12.1 million

Day five: 11/13

Day six: 8 million

Day seven: 139

Day eight: $39

Day nine: 30.1%

Day 10: 120 million

Day 11: -2.26

Day 12: 12 to 15 minutes 

Day 13: 30%

Day 14: 32 million

Day 15: $154,000

Day 16: 118

Day 17: .51

Day 18: 105

Day 19: 1650

Day 20: 36,575

Day 21: 603

Day 22: 23%

Day 23: 31

Day 24: .53

Day 25: 40%



blackinkmiranda Visit Website
I love God, my kids, my hubby, rural life, agriculture and working for CAB. I’m officially the director of producer communications, which basically means I get to learn from lots of smart people and pass that information along to lots of other smart people: you. I’m so lucky to work with cattle producers and other folks in this great industry. (Oh, and one more job perk? I get to eat lots of really yummy beef.)
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