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"TEXAS HOLD'EM" DEALT A WIN IN BEEF CONTROL

Centennial, Colo. – Visionary Design has been awarded first prize in the new Beef Innovation Contest, initiated by the checkoff-funded Beef Innovations Group (BIG). This innovative product is a grilled beef short rib that has been Frenched and scored to the bone, so you can eat while holding it in your hands or simply slice down the bone for tender pieces of beef. The announcement was made during the Research Chefs Association (RCA) Annual Conference and Culinology® Expo in Seattle.

“This is another example of an innovative new product designed for today's consumer. Checkoff-funded efforts continue to deliver easy-to-make, easy-to-eat, healthy beef options for family dinner tables, which only adds value to us, the producer,” says Cattlemen's Beef Board member Mark Pendleton, backgrounder/stocker from Lawsonville, N.C., and vice chair of the checkoff's Joint New Product & Culinary Initiatives Committee. “The added benefit as we continue to find new recipes and applications for beef is working toward increasing demand 10 percent by 2010 as outlined in our Long Range Plan.”

A diverse panel of experts judged the competing products based on their creativity, uniqueness, taste and healthy convenience qualities.

“Response to the contest exceeded expectations in this, our debut year,” says Ellen Gibson, executive director, New Product Initiatives for the National Cattlemen's Beef Association (NCBA). “The Texas Hold'em is an innovative product that will bring convenience and flavor to consumers that crave the great taste of beef.”

This award, presented to Gene Gagliardi of Visionary Design, carries a top prize of $50,000 in advertising support to promote the new beef product. Gagliardi and the winning product are also being featured in print advertisements and on the BIG Web site. Details on the 2009 BIG Beef Innovation Contest will be available in May.

BIG works to develop imaginative beef menu items and products through partnerships with manufacturers, foodservice operators and retailers. To see the winning product, learn more about next years contest or for more information about BIG, visit www.beefinnovationsgroup.com. For more information about the beef checkoff, visit www. beefboard.org.

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