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May is National Beef MonthMay is National Beef Month

Alice in Dairyland: Beef is Wisconsin’s second-largest farm commodity.

April 28, 2023

2 Min Read
Taylor Schaefer with women from the Wisconsin Beef Council at Wisconsin Farm Technology Days
BEEF MONTH: Last summer we used recipes from the Wisconsin Beef Council recipe book to demonstrate at Wisconsin Farm Technology Days in Clark County. PHOTO COURTESY OF WISCONSIN DATCP

by Taylor Schaefer

National Beef Month is here again, and there’s no shortage of reasons to recognize this celebration in Wisconsin. Though every month is a good month for thanking our farmers, May is a dedicated time to show our appreciation for the cattle ranchers who rise before the sun each day to provide food for the world.

As of Jan. 1, Wisconsin is home to 3.4 million cattle, which represent the second-largest agricultural commodity in Wisconsin, with $1.6 billion in income. Being a strong dairy state helps support the beef industry as well.

15,000 Wisconsin beef farms

Growing up on one of Wisconsin’s nearly 15,000 beef farms, I learned that something special happens when a family is raised in agriculture. On the farm, I learned values like time management, hard work, responsibility and compassion. Each of my family members plays a vital role in our success: My dad took the heaviest load managing our cattle, land and equipment, while my brother and I were primarily responsible for our show stock. My mom, although not having a background in agriculture, was always our greatest cheerleader, helping out wherever she could on the farm.

After a long day on the farm, we always join together at the dinner table to enjoy some of our favorite beef-inspired meals. If beef doesn’t typically make it into your meals, National Beef Month is the perfect excuse to give it a try.

The Wisconsin Beef Council has recipe collections for a variety of circumstances. Air fryer recipes, heart-healthy recipes, beef-on-a-budget ideas, ground beef favorites and so many more. The organization also offers tips to ensure safe cooking, virtual cooking classes, grilling tips and other resources to help you feel more comfortable adding beef to your grocery list.

Last summer, we used recipes from the Wisconsin Beef Council recipe book to demonstrate at Wisconsin Farm Technology Days in Clark County. The Mongolian Beef was a fan favorite, and the smells brought visitors over from across the grounds. Each individual recipe includes nutrition facts as well as detailed instructions. Which recipe will you try first?

Over the past 11 months, I have been fortunate to have an opportunity to connect with various producers, processors and restaurant owners to learn more about how beef makes its way from the farm to your table. The Wisconsin Beef Council has created a video series to highlight these visits, which can be found with the resources listed above at beeftips.com.

Schaefer is the 75th Alice in Dairyland.

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