JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Tuesday, on behalf of Missouri cattlemen and cattlewomen, Governor Mike Parson proclaimed May as Beef Month in Missouri. Parson presented the proclamation as part of his Missouri Beef Promotion Tour, starting at Kingsville Livestock Auction and ending at Hy-Vee in Lee’s Summit, meeting with farmers and consumers along the way. Governor Parson was joined by Director of Agriculture Chris Chinn and leadership from the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association and Missouri Beef Industry Council.
“As a cattleman myself, it’s an honor to stand alongside my fellow farmers and ranchers to promote beef as the wholesome protein we all love,” Parson said. “Missouri Beef producers have a long history of caring for their cattle and the environment by protecting land, air, and water resources on their farms and ranches.”
Missouri farmers and ranchers are a driving force in the state’s economy, as the state maintains more than 4 million head of cattle and calves on more than 50,000 farms that encompass nearly 10 million acres of farmland. This economic contribution produced nearly $2 billion in sales in 2017 and supported more than 40,000 jobs.
“Missouri is known around the United States for the high quality cows we maintain and calves we raise,” Director of Agriculture of Chris Chinn said. “Cattle and calves consistently rank No. 2 for total sales in Missouri agriculture, showing how important it is to agriculture’s overall output. We’re proud to join Governor Parson in showcasing key parts of the beef production process from the field all the way to the plate.”
Missouri’s beef industry is indicative of the commitment of Missouri’s farmers and ranchers to good stewardship, providing the world with a safe, wholesome, and abundant food supply. As part of the Missouri Beef Promotion Tour, Governor Parson visited Barker Farms, which is a family-owned cattle farm in Lone Jack. David and Danny Barker own and operate the cow-calf operation, caring for approximately 300 head of cattle.
“We’ve have four generations on our family farm,” David Barker of Lone Jack said. “My brother and I came back to the farm for the lifestyle – everything involved in farming and our rural community – we love. It is great to have a Governor that understands agriculture. It’s great for rural communities. It’s great for Missouri. He grew up with it; he lives it today, and he understands it.”
Livestock markets, where farmers and ranchers often sell their livestock, are central to the cattle business. To showcase this critical link in the beef industry, Governor Parson selected Kingsville Livestock Auction as a stop on the tour. Livestock markets connect farmers and ranchers to buyers in and out of the state, which shows how interconnected the beef industry is.
“We are honored to have Kingsville Livestock Auction as part of the Governor’s Beef Promotion Tour,” cattleman and owner Jeremy Anstine said. “It’s a pretty unique opportunity to have the Governor in our livestock auction as a cattleman himself.”
Beef is recognized as one of the most nutrient dense foods, with ten essential nutrients and more than half of the required daily value of protein coming from one three ounce serving. Governor Parson finished the tour with the Missouri Beef Industry Council’s (MBIC) grilling event at Hy-Vee in Lee’s Summit, cooking and serving beef samples to Missourians who were shopping. MBIC is a farmer-led, nonprofit organization responsible for administering programs of promotion, education, research, and consumer and industry information.
Missouri agriculture is an $88.4 billion industry and remains the No. 1 economic driver in the Show-Me-State. To learn more, visit Agriculture.Mo.Gov.