Mike McCravey

Mike McCravey

Research funded by the Texas Beef Council has proven there are 35 lean cuts of beef that will lower a person’s cholesterol the same as a chicken thigh or chicken breast, said Mike McCravey, the council’s industry relations manager.

“Those things don’t seem to get out there in society like they should be, so we’ve taken that on and it will pay off in the long run. You don’t see anything change overnight as you well know,” McCravey said.

McCravey will provide an update on what ranchers are getting for the $1 per head they’ve paid the past fiscal year for an assessment on cattle at each point of ownership transfer in the state.

The council’s goal is to increase beef demand.

According to the council’s website, it spent the same amount on research in fiscal year 2019 as it did in fiscal year 2018, or $647,000.

It then showed that research to doctors and internists, specifically targeting those who were diagnosing high cholesterol patients and recommending they limit their beef consumption as well as doctors seeing more than 300 patients a month.

Last fiscal year, council representatives made more than 5,200 calls to doctors. This fiscal year, they made an additional 3,400, according to the council’s annual report.

“We’ve had very, very little pushback from anyone in the medical field. They actually appreciate us providing that information to them so that their patients can make their own judgment and not necessarily say ‘no more red meat,’ and that’s where we were for a long time,” McCravey said.

He said that in the ‘70s, people started to worry that red meat had too much fat and caused high cholesterol.

“But the beef carcasses that are processed today have a lot less outside cover. In other words, the fat has been reduced dramatically just by their genetics and by the way they are fed,” McCravey said.

Council representatives also attended 10 health conferences in fiscal year 2019 and established relationships with dietician interns at the Houston VA and the University of Texas Health Science Center.

Jessica Priest reports on the environment and Calhoun County for the Victoria Advocate. She may be reached at jpriest@vicad.com or 361-580-6521.

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Former Environment/Investigations Reporter

Jessica Priest worked for the Victoria Advocate from August 2012-September 2019, first as the courts reporter and then as the environment/investigations reporter. Read her work now at www.jessicapriest.me.

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