Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack this week granted an extension to organizers of the National Beef Checkoff Petition Drive until October 3, 2021. The extension grants extra time for organizers to collect the necessary signatures on the petition calling for a producer vote of the National Beef Checkoff Program.
The South Dakota Livestock Auction Markets Association and Kansas-based Stratford Angus organized and initiated a petition drive that began July 2, 2020. The Department of Agriculture originally established a 12-month period for the collection of the required 88,269 signatures.
R-CALF USA and other groups have helped collect signatures but due to COVID-19-related restrictions, were unable to meet with cattle producers for several months in locations such as livestock auction yards and public meeting places. As a result, the organizers and assisting groups were relying upon an online petition site to collect signatures.
That site, located at www.checkoffvote.com, currently has 18,790 signed petitions.
(From the National Association of Farm Broadcasters)