Missouri Beef Referendum
Director of Agriculture Richard Fordyce announced that the state will not establish a new beef checkoff. This announcement comes after the director approved a petition to conduct a referendum of Missouri cattle producers, at the request of the Missouri Beef Industry Council and pursuant to section 275.352 RSMo as amended, to establish a $1.00 per head state beef checkoff assessment on Dec. 23, 2015.
On April 4, 2016, ballots were mailed to the 8,480 Missouri beef producers who registered during the registration period. Of those, 6,568 valid ballots were returned to the Missouri Department of Agriculture postmarked no later than April 15. 1,663 producers (25.33%) voted for the checkoff and 4,903 producers (74.67%) voted against it.
Department staff counted the ballots and Williams Keepers, LLC, a CPA firm, reviewed the tabulation of ballots for third party verification.
Cattle producers were required to register in order to vote and were able to do so online or by visiting their county USDA-FSA office.