Beef Bits

Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
Jan 3, 2005
by WLJ

Promo boosts steak sales
A recently-concluded 15-week retail promotion resulted in a spike in sales of steak cuts most commonly grilled, according to the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. The promotion was said to have contributed to a 2.2 percent gain in unit sales over the summer and an 8.2 percent increase in dollar sales. Radio advertising and in-store promotions, as well as a partnership with Kraft's A-1 steak sauce, which gave away grills to contest winners, were some of the high points of the promotion. The promotion ran in 44 U.S. markets from May through Labor Day and was funded by the $1 beef checkoff program.

Canada banning implanted veal
Canada will no longer accept veal or veal products from calves that have been implanted with hormones effective Jan. 5. USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service has created a flowchart that reflects these new requirements. The Veal Implant Decision Flowchart should be used in establishments that slaughter calves intended for export to Canada to determine the eligibility of veal and veal products. Canada defines calves as those with a hide-off carcass weight of 180 kilograms—396 lbs.—or less. The export certification requirements for veal and veal products intended for Canada have not changed.

Hardees, Carl’s Jr. earnings jump
CKE Restaurants, Inc. recently announced its third quarter net income rose to $13.1 million, a $12.2 million increase over the prior year net income of $939,000. Same-store sales grew for the sixth consecutive quarter at company-operated Carl's Jr. and Hardee's restaurants, increasing 7.9 and 4.5 percent, respectively. Consolidated revenue increased for the fifth consecutive quarter to $348.9 million, a 4.2 percent increase over the third quarter of 2003. As of Nov. 1 CKE Restaurants, Inc., operated a total of 3,183 franchised or company-owned restaurants in 44 states and in 13 countries, including 1,017 Carl's Jr. restaurants, 2,047 Hardee's restaurants and 101 La Salsa Fresh Mexican Grill restaurants.

Chain features pastrami burger
Carl's Jr. this winter unveiled a new Pastrami Burger in more than 1,000 restaurants nationwide. The decision to offer the new burger was made after similar products were becoming customer favorites at several western state restaurants, including The Hat in Los Angeles and Crown Burgers in Salt Lake City. The Carl's Jr. adaptation features an all-beef patty topped with thinly sliced pastrami, red onion, dill pickles, lettuce, tomato and mustard, sandwiched between two toasted, seeded buns. The new burger is going for a suggested retail price of $3.79 for a single and $4.79 for the double version.

Scotland boasts largest burger
A Glasgow, Scotland, restaurant, Baloo Burger Company, has introduced a 10-pound cheeseburger that contains seven pounds of prime Scottish beef, a head of lettuce, 12 slices of cheese, six tomatoes and a family-size jar of mayonnaise. It is said to contain 7,000 calories, costs about $100 (65 pounds sterling), and must be ordered a day in advance to allow time to bake the 18-inch sesame-seed bun. The burger itself takes 90 minutes to grill. It is believed to be the largest burger in the world, beating out a Pennsylvania burger that contains six pounds of beef.

Beef production down
In its monthly slaughter report, USDA said commercial red meat production for the first 11 months of 2004 was 41.5 billion pounds, down three percent from 2003. Accumulated beef production was down seven percent from last year, USDA said. Veal was also down 12 percent.

McD’s wins marketing award
McDonald's Corporation was honored earlier this month as the “Marketer of the Year” by Advertising Age magazine, for the brand's marketing achievements around the world in 2004. The award was presented in part for the company’s development and utilization of the “I’m lovin’ it” ad campaign. In choosing the award winner, Advertising Age weighed a number of criteria, including a company's business performance, strong leadership, advertising creativity and marketing effectiveness.

Over 750 EU BSE cases in ‘04
European officials reported recently that a total of 767 cases of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) have been confirmed in the region between January and November this year. The United Kingdom has reported 325 cases; Spain 114; Portugal 75; France 50; Germany 41; Belgium 10; Poland nine; the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Italy each with seven; the Netherlands five; and Slovenia two. Since the end of November, Spain has reported another 17 cases of the disease, bringing it’s total for the year to 131 and 507 since the disease was first discovered.