CHICAGO -- To help move the abundance of wholesale beef on the market this summer through retail stores, the Beef Industry Council here is launching its first-ever coupon program, which will be featured in six cities next month.
Later this summer the program will be expanded to 11 additional cities.
On July 24, $1 value coupons good toward the purchase of fresh beef will be distributed through free-standing inserts in Denver, Houston, Milwaukee, San Francisco, St. Louis and Chicago.
In three markets, a minimum purchase of six pounds is required; in the other three, the minimum purchase is 8 pounds. The coupon will be valid through Sept. 9 and is tied into the industry's theme, "Beef. It's What's for Dinner."
In some of the markets, state beef councils are supporting the program with radio ads reminding consumers to look for the coupons.
"This is the first time in the history of the business that we are dropping a coupon," said Matt Wineinger, director of retail programs for the beef group. "We hope the coupon will enhance efforts of what retailers are already doing."
A study showed that the average shopping excursion for beef nets 4.1 pounds, said Wineinger. "We are trying to get them to buy more than what they normally would to get product off the market," he said.
Cattle supplies are at their highest level since 1987, according to the BIC.
The participating markets were chosen based on their consumer demographics and the potential buying power of those markets, said Wineinger.