December 15, 2003
American Lamb Board Approves 2004 Matching Grants Program
Dec. 2003 -- The American Lamb Board at its quarterly board meeting the last week of October approved the creation of a Matching Grants Program to market American lamb. A total of $50,000 was budgeted for the first round of grant funding in 2004. Competitive grants are available in any amount up to $50,000. The grants require a 1-to-1 cash match from the grant recipient. In-kind contributions are not considered for the matching requirement. Duration of grants will be one year with final reports due no later than Jan. 31, 2005.
Non-profit organizations are invited to submit proposals that expand or strengthen the market for American lamb; conducting promotions, consumer educational events, field days or demonstrations to further disseminate information to lamb buyers or other creative lamb marketing program will be considered. Applicants must identify specific marketing problems or constraints and how they will address those problems or constraints. Projects which include a collaborative effort among industry organizations are encouraged.
The 2004 Grant Cycle ? The grant period will begin immediately with funds available right after the New Year. Final reports are due no later than Jan. 31, 2005.
Nov. 1, 2003 - Grant applications available at: www.americanlambboard.org
Jan. 4, 2004 - Deadline for receiving grant applications
Jan. 10, 2004 - Grant Committee meeting to recommend grants recipients
Jan. 23, 2004 - ALB Board meeting to approve grant recipients
February 2004 - Approximate date of initial funding
Dec. 31, 2004 - Deadline for submitting Final Report
January 2005 - Approximate date of final payment
The American Lamb Board (ALB) is a national promotion, research and information organization whose purpose is to strengthen the position of lamb and lamb products in domestic and foreign markets. The ALB engages in activities which serve to strengthen or expand markets for lamb and lamb products. The ALB is prohibited from using funds collected under this program to influence legislation or governmental action or policy, and therefore, funds granted under this program cannot be used to influence public policy or actions, including lobbying. The 13-member board which administers the program was established by federal legislation and appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture in November 2002. The work of the board is overseen by the U.S. Department of Agriculture?s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service. All grants approved by ALB are subject to USDA?s review and approval. No project may begin until ALB has received USDA approval.
American Lamb Board Makes It Big with National Media
Dec. 2003 -- On October 16, attendees representing more than 25 national print-media outlets turned out for the American Lamb Board-sponsored ?Four Seasons - Endless Reasons? held at the Four Seasons Hotel in New York City. The event featured celebrity chefs focusing on the variety and versatility of lamb cuts in entr?e meals. Some of the attendees included Liz Forgang of the New York Daily News, the James Beard Foundation, and editors from the food magazines Gourmet, Food and Wine and Food Arts. A special guest included famed chef Michel Nischan, who collected American lamb information and tasted recipes at every season station. All attendees received comprehensive press kits that highlight American Lamb quality, purchasing tips, nutritional information and the chef?s seasonal recipe ideas that use a variety of cuts. For these consumer recipes, you can visit www.lambinfo.com
The celebrity chefs, who provided seasonal recipe tastings and revealed their secret lamb lore, include:
Chef Jim Botsacos of Molyvos restaurant, New York City
Chef Pano Karatassos of Kyma Restaurant, Atlanta
Chef Melissa Perello of Charles Nob Hill Restaurant, San Francisco
Chef Broke Vosika of The Four Seasons Hotel, New York City
To reach targeted New York media that could not attend the event, press kits were delivered to an additional 137 national media outlets that cover food, entertainment, lifestyle and travel. The American Lamb Board is continuing to work with these national media targets for coverage opportunities.
The Four Seasons-Endless Reasons campaign quickly extended to two widely attended food service events -- the Culinary Institute of America?s Worlds of Flavor conference in Napa Valley, Calif., and the International Foodservice Editorial Council conference in Denver, Colo. Both events took place the first week of November, and offered American Lamb a platform to reach more than 500 culinary opinion leaders and top food publications.
Two New American Lamb Board Members Appointed
Dec. 2003 -- Florence M. Cubiburu of California and. Arthur H. Denis III (Chico) of Texas were appointed by Secretary of Agriculture Ann M. Veneman to represent producers on the Lamb Promotion, Research, and Information Board. Both will serve a 3-year term.
Cubiburu operates a cow/calf and ewe/lamb operation in the San Joaquin Valley and is a third-generation sheep producer. She currently serves on the Boards of the California Sheep Commission and the California Wool Growers Association.
?I?m extremely honored to represent producers on the American Lamb Board,? said Cubiburu. ?There are many exciting promotion programs underway, and I?m encouraged that Americans consumers will be seeing the benefits of our domestically produced lamb.?
Denis is a third-generation sheep rancher who owns and operates Denis Ranch. In addition, he operates a feedlot with a 50,000-head capacity. Denis helped found Ranchers? Lamb of Texas, Inc. and has served as Chairman of the Board since its inception. Currently, Denis also serves as vice president of the Texas Sheep and Goat Raisers? Association and is in line to serve as the association president next year.
?I?m pleased for the opportunity to help the industry promote American lamb as a premium, preferred product,? said Denis.
The 13-member board is composed of six producers, three feeders, one seedstock producer and three first handlers. The Secretary of Agriculture appoints one-third of all board members each year.
Established under the Commodity Promotion, Research, and Information Act of 1996 and the Lamb Promotion, Research, and Information Order, the board is financed by a mandatory assessment of one half cent per pound on ovine animals of any age, including ewes and rams, sold by producers, seedstock producers, feeders and exporters. Also, an assessment of thirty cents per head must be paid by first handlers. Assessments began on July 1, 2002. USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service monitors operations of the board.