Slammin’ Sam joins lambassador Sam in Christmas red meat marketing campaign

Beef Central, 01/12/2023

Sam Thaiday and Sam Kekovich in MLA’s pre-Christmas red meat marketing blitz. Source: MLA

A BEEFY Broncos and Queensland Maroons second-rower has graduated to ‘beef chief’ in Meat & Livestock Australia’s new campaign encouraging shoppers to eat red meat this Christmas.

Sam Thaiday has appeared in an ad with ex-AFL player Sam Kekovich, Australia’s “lambassador” who is well-known for his annual call to arms for Australians to throw some chops on the barbecue for Australia Day.

In the latest ad, the pair put aside their differences in football codes to promote their shared love of Aussie red meats.

The ad is not the first time Mr Kekovich has has ventured into world of beef promotion this year after he briefly appeared in a promotional video for Australia’s second-largest lotfeeder and beef brand owner Mort & Co. The ad spent a weekend on social media before being taken down.

Suspecting Mr Kekovich had decided lamb was his lane and he had better stay in it, Beef Central asked readers who could possibly be Australia’s “beefbassador”.

Many suggestions were put forward including actor Glenn Robbins rotating between Kath & Kim’s Kel Knight “the purveyor of fine meats” and outback aficionado Russell Coight. Other notable mentions were Paul Hogan, Chris Hemsworth, the “Honey Badger”, Ash Barty and Shane Webcke.

In the end, Sam Thaiday was given the job.

Supporting the industry through the downturn

On a more serious note, MLA Managing Director Jason Strong said the ad was an addition to the existing beef and lamb campaign calendar and was developed to support the industry at a time when saleyard prices had declined through a large part of 2023.

“There has been good news in the last few weeks with some areas receiving decent rain and a lift in saleyard prices – but producers have also experienced a dry winter and saleyard prices remain below 10-year averages,” Mr Strong said.

“This new ad is helping us reach out to Australian shoppers to illustrate that red meat is great value leading up to Christmas. Now is a great time to pick up some Australian beef and lamb.

“They are both delicious.”

Mr Strong said that there had been an increasing number of consumers looking to purchase beef and lamb in recent weeks.

“Even before we hit summer, we’ve seen retail prices fall and purchases soar,” Mr Strong said.

“Data from MLA via NielsenIQ Homescan shows that in the 12 weeks to 5 November, the retail price for lamb has fallen 13.6% and beef has fallen 6.4pc.

“This has led to a surge in volume purchased at this time, with lamb up 17.2pc and beef up 7.7pc. We expect this to continue through December towards Christmas.”

Source: MLA


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  1. David Connellan, 01/12/2023

    Word on the street is that Sammy Thaiday was paid for his role in the ad (at least in part) in beef – specifically, OP ribs, rump caps and striploin. A ‘special order’ paid for by MLA went out to Samford on Thursday, ready for a big barbie tonight.

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