Tampa no longer has to wonder where the beef is

February 8, 2013 by  

Many people will fondly remember a funny commercial in which an elderly woman wanted to know where the beef was – the answer is that it’s in Tampa, Florida, at least for a few days.

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association is holding their trade show and convention in Tampa right now. It expects more than 5,000 attendees, drawn from communities across the country, to have attended by the time it comes to a close tomorrow.

Although the cattlemen have been holding conventions for the past 115 years, this is the first meeting they have held in Tampa. Florida cattle-growers are quick to remind their fellow cattlemen that this is an oversight, since the first cattle to arrive in North America were unloaded near Tampa Bay. That was in 1521, and marked the start of the cattle industry on the North American continent. Florida’s cattlemen are very proud of that fact.

Florida raises more beef than many people realise. In fact, there are more than a million head of cattle in the state, though they may not be obvious to people driving on the interstates, visiting the beaches, or looking for the theme parks near Orlando. Florida’s ability to produce beef may become critical this year, since many of the Midwestern cattle growing states have been hit with a crippling drought.

Since the cattlemen want to attract young people to the industry, the convention organizers might want to work with brochure printers to explain what they do, why they do it, and how someone can get involved.