5 must-read articles to learn the positive impact of beef past the farm gate

When Katie Pinke directed her daughter to a beef expert in preparation for her speech meet, it made her think about the need for trusted ag sources of information.

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Elizabeth Pinke prepared a radio commentary for a speech meet on the impacts of beef past the farm gate. Pictured is Pinke in the 2021 Greater Grand Forks County fair, the first year she had a 4-H beef project and showed at her local county fair.
Contributed / Laura Schweigert Photography

Our daughter Elizabeth’s first speech meet was last weekend. In her radio commentary, she wrote and spoke on the impact of beef cattle beyond the farm gate. She came to me asking how to find the best, most accurate beef information and sources.

Elizabeth explained she had been searching for information about the many uses of beef, including products you may not think of that utilize beef animals, like gummy bears, marshmallows and gelatin. She wanted to share about how beef cattle are used in modern medicine and then tie in a personal connection of why she chooses to show beef cattle in 4-H.

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Finding the needed beef information and accurate sources for her writing and preparation brought her to ask me for recommendations.

I said, “We need to Phone-A-Friend!”

Phone-A-Friend was always a lifeline option on the game show “Who Wants to Be A Millionaire?” It's where a friend is called on the telephone to help the contestant with a question they are stumped on and help them accurately answer it within a short time frame.


Based on Elizabeth’s expression of bewilderment, I knew she was not following me or a fan of the game show.

We all need friends in agriculture to connect us to the best most accurate agriculture information. Aside from calling in experts on your own, I suggest a subscription to Agweek and watching AgweekTV each week to increase agriculture knowledge.

For the beef research, I suggested reaching out to Rachel Endecott, PhD., a Montana beef rancher, owner of Grey Horse Consulting, former breed association research manager and Extension beef specialist with Montana State University. Rachel would be approachable and educational for Elizabeth’s inquiries, an excellent "Phone-A-Friend" in agriculture.

Less than five minutes later, Elizabeth and Rachel were on Facetime. The next day Rachel texted me she had sent more information to Elizabeth by text and how much she enjoyed working with her and added, “I love helping people who want to learn and lead.”

Rachel Endecott of Grey Horse Consulting and Montana cattle rancher helped Elizabeth Pinke in sourcing her speech on beef. Endecott is pictured at the 2021 World Pork Expo.
Noah Fish / Agweek file photo

I thanked Rachel for being my free “Phone-A-Friend” on all things beef information for a ninth grader’s speech meet preparation.

Elizabeth read the commentary to me once late Friday night, and by early Saturday I armed her with bags of fruit, Wishek sausage and my mom's homemade cookies. Another mom sent muffins and drinks, and the speech team left for their meet at an area school.

She returned home to share about her first time sharing her beef commentary in the radio contest, placing first.

First place or last place, how the accurate information was gathered matters most to me as a mom trying to raise up a next-generation engaged in where their food comes from and wanting to learn and know more about agriculture.


With permission from Elizabeth, these are five sources, she utilized for her speech and learned about from Rachel Endecott.

  1. Beef Checkoff Graphic from the Pennsylvania Beef Council

    Wheres the Beef Cattle by Products by Michael Johnson on Scribd

  2. North American Meat Institute
  3. Benefits Youth Gain from Showing Livestock from University of Minnesota Extension
  4. Sustainability in beef from the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association
  5. Beef Magazine ’s column with sourced links

Each article provides accurate beef information and reminded me the importance of connecting our youth to resources where they can learn about agriculture.

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Find bipartisan support and stay in your lane are two lessons Katie Pinke picked up from moderating a discussion about the farm bill at the Northern Corn and Soybean Expo in Fargo on Feb. 14, 2023.
David Kohl gave valuable business advice during the Northern Corn and Soy Expo. Included in that advice: get rid of toxic people in your business.

Whether you're an expert, a "Phone-A-Friend" consultant to others or seeking out accurate agriculture information, keep connecting, learning and sharing about the positive impact of beef and all agriculture has beyond the farm gate.

Pinke is the publisher and general manager of Agweek. She can be reached at, or connect with her on Twitter @katpinke.

Opinion by Katie Pinke
Katie Pinke serves as Agweek and AgweekTV's publisher and general manager and since 2015 has written a weekly column. Pinke resides in rural North Dakota with her husband and children where she is a 4-H leader, active community volunteer, and a proud fifth-generation farmers' daughter.
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