By Audrey Hambright
Matt Perrier of Dalebanks Angus, is truly in the business of giving both the customer – and the consumer – what they want.
A 1996 graduate of Kansas State University, Perrier quickly put his degree to use in animal sciences and industry on taking a job with the Pennsylvania Beef Council, where he worked in retail and food service promotion. His role of moving beef in the eastern seaboard states taught him how important it is for the beef industry to be focused on the consumer.
“If we truly give consumers what they desire, they will come by and pay more for it next time,” he said. “I learned how much consumers enjoy eating experiences that involve beef.”
In the spring of 1997, took a position as a regional manager for the American Angus Association (AAA) in Fort Worth, Texas. In 2000, he relocated to St. Joseph, Missouri, where he served as the director of AAA’s commercial program department and commercial industry operations until receiving an opportunity to move back home to his family’s operation in Eureka, Kansas.
Dalebanks Angus runs close to 500 head of females split into spring and fall calving herds. In the seedstock business, its goal is to produce registered bulls with a balance of trails to profit its commercial beef industry customers. Most often, these priorities are calving ease, weaning weight and reproductive efficiency.
With the family operation in business for more than 100 years, the Perriers have a long-term outlook on management and customer service. They have been fortunate to achieve 90 percent return customers. A testament to that fact, Perrier said that the genetics are working and calves sired by the Dalebanks Angus bull(s) are adding value to the commercial cow/calf producers.
Perrier has been involved in many industry organizations including the AAA, which he represented at the Young Cattlemen’s Conference through the NCBA. He was elected chairman for that group in 2006. This year he is currently serving as the president of the Kansas Livestock Association. As an operation, Dalebanks Angus was recognized as the BIF Seedstock Producer of the year in 1997.
Looking forward, Perrier believes animal agriculture can do more to tell the story of how producers bring food to the market.
“[Consumers] want to know this. They don’t want data and facts,” he said. “They do want to feel comfortable that we took care of that animal and the food we’re producing is safe and wholesome and that we did everything to make sure it was a good eating experience.”
“We have to understand the money that enters into the beef community has to come from the consumer,” he said. “From carcass quality and consumer friendly products, if we can deliver a good experience, they’ll pay for premium protein.”
Just as importantly, Perrier wants producers to recognize the work they do.
“I think it has become even more of a noble profession,” he said. “Feeding people across the world is one of the more important jobs that can be done. We need to take pride in the fact that we do not provide those products for people across the nation and globe.”