WV Beef Producers Marking Fathers’ Day with Luncheon at Governor’s Mansion
Representatives of the WV Beef Industry Council will present Governor Earl Ray Tomblin and Commissioner of Agriculture Gus R. Douglass with choice cuts of “Beef for Fathers’ Day” at a luncheon ceremony at the Governor’s Mansion Courtyard Thursday, June 14, at Noon.
West Virginia’s 10,700 farmers raised 200,000 beef cattle in 2010, amounting to nearly 150 million pounds of beef and sales of over $100 million.
“This celebration is a longtime tradition of the state’s beef producers and highlights the value of beef in a healthy diet,” said Commissioner Douglass. “It also reminds West Virginia citizens that agriculture is all around them. Beef cattle can be found in every corner of West Virginia, and the income to farmers boosts local economies throughout the state.”
West Virginia Beef Queen Jessica Woodworth will be on hand. Her family’s business, Flying W Farms of Burlington, will be providing beef brisket for lunch. Flying W is a true farm-to-fork operation. The Woodworth family grows, feeds, slaughters and processes their own cattle, which they then sell at their retail store and restaurant, and through mail orders. They are inspected by the West Virginia Department of Agriculture’s Meat and Poultry Inspection Division.
Besides being a favorite selection for the grill, beef is naturally nutrient-rich, giving consumers a large amount of nutritional bang per calorie. Beef has eight times more vitamin B12, six times more zinc and two and a half times more iron than a skinless chicken breast. Plus, 20 of the 29 lean beef cuts have, on average, only one more gram of saturated fat than a 3-ounce serving of skinless chicken breast.
Beef is also a safe, highly regulated, domestically grown product. Beef cattle typically graze on land unsuitable for crops, especially in West Virginia’s hilly terrain. Most of their weight is gained on a diet of grass. They typically receive supplements of grain in the last month or two before slaughter to increase the amount of fat within the meat, which increases flavor and tenderness.
Thanks to continually improving genetics and management practices, beef farmers use fewer resources to produce more beef each year. In 1980, one average animal produced 449 pounds of meat. The same type of animal produced 619 pounds in 2006.