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Walmart Invests in Beef Supplier to Create More Industry Capacity

Retailer’s minority stake will help Sustainable Beef build new facility
Emily Crowe, Progressive Grocer
Sustainable Beef LLC
Sustainable Beef is set to open a beef processing facility in Nebraska by 2024.

Walmart is looking to help supplement the current beef industry and provide additional opportunities for ranchers to increase their business by taking a minority stake in Sustainable Beef LLC. The rancher-owned company, based in North Platte, Neb., will help Walmart source top-quality angus beef from its new beef-processing facility, while the retailer will help fund the construction of that facility.

As part of the investment, Walmart will have representation on Sustainable Beef’s board of directors. The retailer is also bolstering its commitment to increasing access to high-quality beef at an affordable price for its customers, and also boosting capacity for the beef industry while ensuring long-term economic viability for cattle ranchers.

“At Walmart, we are dedicated to providing high-quality, affordable beef to our customers, and an investment in Sustainable Beef LLC will give us even more access to these products,” said Tyler Lehr, SVP of merchandising for deli services, meat and seafood for Walmart U.S. “We know Sustainable Beef LLC has a responsible approach to beef processing, one that includes creating long-term growth for cattle ranchers and family farmers. This investment provides greater visibility into the beef supply chain and complements Walmart’s regeneration commitment to improve grazing management.”

For Sustainable Beef’s part, it will work with cattle feeders and ranchers to understand critical elements of the supply chain cycle, including grain sourcing and grazing management. The company will also adhere to Walmart's Position on Antibiotics in Animals, which asks suppliers to adopt and implement American Veterinary Medical Association Judicious Use Principles of Antimicrobials. 

“We set out on a journey two years ago to create a new beef- processing plant to add some capacity to the industry and provide an opportunity for producers to integrate their business of raising quality cattle with the beef-processing portion of the industry and do it in a sustainable manner,” said David Briggs, CEO of Sustainable Beef LLC. “During this journey, we found that Sustainable Beef and Walmart aligned on continuing to improve how we care for our animals and crops and provide consumers the positive experience of enjoying quality beef.”

Each week, approximately 230 million customers and members visit Walmart’s more than 10,500 stores and numerous e-commerce websites under 46 banners in 24 countries. The company employs approximately 2.3 million associates worldwide. Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart U.S. is No. 1 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

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