Support farmers during May Beef month

Amber Burke
Wisconsin State Farmer
Per capita consumption of beef and veal is nearly 59 pounds a year. That equates to almost 236 quarter-pound burgers.

As beef enthusiasts across the state dawn their aprons and click their grilling tongs, May Beef Month is a celebration of the farmers who are a crucial part of Wisconsin’s heritage, economy, and future.

Wisconsin has a robust beef industry, ranking ninth in the nation for the number of cattle and calves that call the Badger state home, 3.5 million total, as detailed in a recent press release from the Wisconsin Beef council. The value of those cattle and calves to the state is almost as much as Wisconsin’s soybeans, vegetables, melons, fruits, and nuts combined when comparing cash receipts, according to USDA statistics.

Beef cattle graze on green pastures.

Whether it’s a ribeye steak on the grill or a chuck roast for the family, customers are choosing beef. In fact, per capita consumption of beef and veal is nearly 59 pounds a year. That equates to almost 236 quarter-pound burgers.

This May Beef Month, there are many ways to celebrate:

  • Host a May Beef Month event: Keep an eye out for a local steak fry in the area. Or, join the Wisconsin Beef Council for the 2nd Annual Burgers & Buns Fun Run with both a virtual option and an in-person opportunity at the Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center in Manitowoc.
  • Consider engaging with your local farmer: There are nearly 14,000 beef farms and 6,500 dairy farms spread across the state who raise this high-quality protein. Ask for a tour, find your local farmer on Facebook, or create a conversation at the farmer’s market to learn more about how your beef is grown. Unsure of where to begin? Check out Wisconsin Beef Council’s ‘Wisconsin Way’ video for a brief tour of the state’s beef industry.
  • Visit an area meat processor: Wisconsin is home to more than 500 licensed meat establishments in 68 of the 72 counties. ( as recorded by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture Trade and Consumer Protection.) Each has a flavorful twist on snack sticks, smoked meat, classic cuts, and more. This sector of the industry employs more than 105,300 people and has a $44.3 billion economic impact.
  • Grill like you mean it with beef: Beef is a nutrient powerhouse that supplies half the daily value of protein in just one 3 ounce serving. Filled with 10 essential nutrients like zinc, iron, and B vitamins, beef can help our bodies feel more satisfied with fewer calories. Beef’s great versatility means there are plenty of options for every taste and budget. Find inspiration from simple steak swaps to budget-friendly recipes and affordable beef cuts for families. Stay up to date with the latest recipes and beef industry news at