Bring On The Bison

Bring On The Bison

Bring On The Bison. I'm Greg Martin with today's Line On Agriculture.

Have you tried a bison steak or a bison burger? Consumer demand has been growing steadily and that means a growing business for bison producers. That growth is due to more retail outlets - such as Costco carrying bison products along with more bison found in restaurants and in farmers markets - according to the National Bison Association Executive Director Dave Carter.

CARTER: From about 2004 when the USDA first started tracking the wholesale bison prices our story for years was that every month or every year the prices were a little bit higher than the year before and that was good news because around 2000 our industry was really in trouble. We had built up the herds but we hadn't introduced the product to the consumers so from 2004 we watched those prices steadily climb until about 2011and the price that the producers were receiving for a 2-year old bull when they took it in hit about 3.90 to 4 dollars a pound on the carcass which meant that the ground bison in the retails stores was about 10-dollars a pound and that's really when we started to see a little bit of consumer pushback. But boy they sure didn't push back too hard because the retail price of ground bison is still right around 9-dollars, 9.50.

Carter adds that demand has continued to increase in the last three years - and so have the prices received by producers as they are getting $3.85-3.90 per pound right now for those same two-year old.

That's today's Line On Agriculture. I'm Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network.

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