Cattle Today

Cattle Today



Centennial, Colo., Aug. 21, 2006 – A checkoff-funded foodservice promotional partnership is now underway at Golden Corral Buffet and Grill, a 480-plus – unit U.S. restaurant chain that last year sold more than 50 million pounds of beef — its biggest beef year ever. Based on the first 30 days of this promotion, the chain expects to increase its purchase of top sirloin by 3. 8 million pounds through the end of 2006, according to Dick Chase, Golden Corral's vice president of purchasing and distribution.

The chain is now featuring Applewood Bacon Sirloin Filet as the daily dinner centerpiece for its family-style buffet and grill concept, which includes an “endless” selection of entrees, sides and desserts for a single price. The promotion offers huge exposure for beef, as the Golden Corral chain serves some 200 million meals a year and has consistently been named the top U.S. buffet and grill franchisor by Entrepreneur Magazine, according to Laurie Bryant, chairman of the Cattlemen's Beef Board Foodservice Committee.

“The chain's national presence will allow for a lot of promotional tie-in at the state and local levels — and it runs for six months, so that really extends its reach and value,” he explained.

The promotion includes extensive television and radio advertising that will be placed locally, in-store signage and promotional space on the chain's home Web page, www.goldencorral. net, which features a prominent beef checkoff logo.

Dolly Mercer, Golden Corral's manager of consumer promotions and national events, said the chain is constantly testing new beef selections and menu strategies, such as the popular Saturday Night Steak Night, which features fresh-cut, grilled-to-order sirloin and other entrees. The Golden Corral has been a long-time friend of beef. The company received the checkoff-funded Beef Backer award earlier this year, an award that solicits restaurant entries yearly from state beef councils. Awards are based on menu creativity, use of beef cuts, and quality of the beef product, beef's share of the menu, and marketing communications and training programs.

In accepting the award, Beverly Lynch, vice president of food and beverage, said, “Golden Corral loves beef — it is by far the number one protein we serve every day. We give our guests what they demand and they demand beef.”

Additionally, the chain's corporate chef, Debra Olson, has attended the beef seminar at the Culinary Institute of America's Greystone Campus in Napa, Calif. This seminar draws chefs representing high volume foodservice chains, such as Golden Corral, for classroom instruction and ideas on adding consumer-winning, versatile beef meals to the menu.


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