BEDFORD, Pa. — Annual engagement with the PA Academy of Family Physicians(PAFP) commenced November 8-10, at the Omni Bedford Springs Resort in Bedford, PA, during the Bedford CME Conference, with efforts highlighting health benefits of beef in the diet. The Beef Checkoff’s Northeast Beef Promotion Initiative (NEBPI) began a year-long partnership with the academy in January 2019, which granted the checkoff participation at their annual fall and spring meetings, as well as many touchpoint opportunities throughout the year. This fall gathering drew nearly 170 family physicians, residents and students, from across Commonwealth, for the three-day educational event. The beef checkoff has found great value in long-term partnerships that have led to long-term successes, and increased advocacy efforts on behalf of beef.
Checkoff staff engaged directly with this group of influential health professionals by sharing the positive benefits of recommending beef to their patients through on-site exhibition and an educational session. On the evening of Friday, November 8, Abbie Gellman, Registered Dietitian and chef of Culinary Nutrition Cuisine, welcomed the group to an interactive beef and wine pairing demonstration titled, “Culinary Techniques to Meet the Needs of a Patient’s Diagnosis, without Sacrificing Flavor.” During the educational event, Gellman walked the attendees through choosing the right cut of beef to meet the challenges of their patients, whether that be a lean cut for cardiovascular patients or suggesting the recommended 3-oz portion size. Gellman’s food-focused approach caught the attention of many physicians and demonstrated the ease of preparing beef at home by creating the Beef and Blue Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms.
Following the educational session, PAFP President, Mary Stock Keister, MD, commented, “I really enjoyed how Abbie outlined all the nutritional advantages of beef and created a simple and easy beef appetizer.”
The evening reception then opened up with an interactive beef and wine pairing activity, featuring delicious beef appetizers and award-winning wine tasting from Briar Valley Winery. The evening seminar showcased beef’s versatility and flavor profile, while also displaying its ease of preparation. Gellman stayed on-site to sign and giveaway 50 copies of her newest cookbook, The Mediterranean Dash Diet Cookbook, which included some delicious beef recipes. Of those polled during the beef demo reception, 50% had an improved perception of beef and all were ‘more likely’ or ‘just as likely’ to recommend beef to their patients.
A wealth of information was also provided during conference exhibit hours, where NEBPI staff shared the latest checkoff research, fact sheets and recipes. Physicians relayed some of the questions they have been receiving from patients, while staff provided solutions to those concerns with the science behind choosing lean beef in a food-focused approach to health. During the weekend conference, the checkoff garnered more than 200 on-site engagements through the culinary demo, survey questionnaires, literature sharing and genuine conversations. Of those engaging with the beef booth through an on-site survey, 77% polled had a positive opinion of beef and 23% had a neutral opinion of beef. No negative opinions of beef were observed throughout the weekend, and most attendees were thankful for our sponsorship.
The PAFP currently works on behalf of 5,000 family physicians, family medicine residents and students as a professional member-driven association. The Academy serves state physicians through acting as the leading resource for training of family physicians, being the primary voice of physicians on health care issues, setting standards for organized medicine, and being a leader in the community on health care issues.
This event was made possible by the Iowa Beef Council through funding to the beef checkoff’s NEBPI, and with assistance from the Pennsylvania Beef Council. For more information on the checkoff’s involvement, visit the NEBPI website, NEBPI Facebook page.
–Nichole Hockenberry, PA Beef Council