U.S. red meat companies taking advantage of the USDA’s Branded Products Promotion Program – administered through USMEF – rang up $6,920,063 in sales of U.S. beef and pork to international buyers in fiscal year 2008, an increase of nearly 27 percent over the previous year.
The Branded Products Promotion Program has had noteworthy success in helping smaller companies gain entry to targeted export markets and establish their branded products. These companies use their own money, leveraged with matching funds from the program, to develop export markets for U.S. beef, pork or lamb exports. The companies involved in this year’s program are exporting pork and beef to markets that include Mexico, Japan and Europe.
“U.S. companies are proud of their American products and they know that brands can add value, build customer loyalty and play an increasing role in export expansion in the 21st century,” said Barbara Watson, USMEF manager, branded programs.
There are still funds available in the program for the current year to can help small U.S. companies attend international and approved domestic shows with large international attendance and assist with international travel costs. Two of the companies participating in the program in 2008 were new to exporting. One company’s activities included product demonstrations in Mexico while another company’s activities involved a chef seminar in Germany.
As a requirement of the USDA Branded Products Promotion Program, all participants must set measurable performance goals based on export sales to targeted markets. Promotions funded under this program must take place before Dec. 31, 2009. Applications will be accepted as long as funds are available.