A quintessential American summer just isn’t complete without the sound of juicy beef burgers sizzling on the grill. As warm weather approaches and COVID-19 restrictions begin to ease, consumers have another reason to embrace the start of summer: Their beloved burger doesn’t just taste delicious, it packs a nutritional punch! So what better way to kick off Memorial Day weekend than by celebrating National Beef Burger Day on May 28?
To help accomplish this, the meat industry should make it as easy as possible for consumers to shop nutritiously. Whether online or in-store, retailers should wholeheartedly welcome both die-hard meat eaters and flexitarians, ensuring their place as the go-to resource for balanced meal solutions. Today’s consumers are likely to respond to easy, visually appealing, wholesome recipes from retailers and brands,2 so make sure that innovative recipes for beef burgers are on your site. Feature real ground beef as the protein star of the plate and bring on the veggie fixin’s, cross-merchandising with produce to offer tasty, healthy meal solutions. Play up the burger’s seasonal relevance while also calling out its nutritional value.
After all, unlike many plant-based burgers, the beef burger is a “complete protein,” meaning it contains the nine essential amino acids the human body cannot make on its own. In fact, three ounces of ground beef deliver 10 essential nutrients (with just 170 calories) we need for healthy lifestyles – the ideal base for building a deliciously nutritious burger this summer, and throughout the year. By sharing these nutrition facts with your customers, you give them permission to enjoy the beef burgers they already love, guilt-free.
“Americans love authentic beef burgers, and they’re a practical solution for enjoying more food groups most people don’t eat enough of each day, like vegetables and fruits,” said Shalene McNeill, PhD, RDN, Executive Director, Nutrition Science, Health & Wellness, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. “With more Americans looking for easy steps to enjoy healthier lifestyles, now is the perfect time to help people ‘beef up’ their protein-packed beef burgers by promoting new ideas for adding nutrition bonuses with toppers like spinach, slaws, pineapple and mangos and more.”
Nutrition aside, real beef burgers are also better for business. The pandemic has amplified Americans’ affinity for authentic beef burgers, given that “nearly nine in 10 consumers have ordered a restaurant burger in the past three months. The current economic, social and political climate has Americans reaching for comfort foods like burgers.”4 The lockdown influenced Americans to get comfortable cooking meat, with a significant number (59%) of meat eaters saying they will continue to experiment with different ways to cook meat.2
As we think beyond the pandemic, the time has never been better for the meat industry to educate consumers that comfort food favorites like beef burgers are flavorful, nutritional powerhouses. There’s just no better way to jump-start summer. How are you celebrating National Beef Burger Day? I’ll take my burger caprese style with fresh mozzarella, basil and tomatoes.
For more delicious beef burger inspiration, visit the recipe collection from BeefItsWhatsForDinner.com.
2 Midan Marketing, The Pandemic’s Lasting Imprint on Meat Consumers, January 2021
3 Midan Marketing, Consumer Segmentation, Flexitarian Profile, July 2019
4 Mintel Burger Trends: Incl Impact of COVID-19, US, November 2020