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Build Your Base... A Playbook's Secret Weapon

On a fall night from August through October, in most small South Dakota communities, you will find the majority of the community at or headed to a football or volleyball game. As the school year continues, communities transition to basketball games and wrestling meets throughout the winter months and it isn’t long before spring brings fans to the track cheering for “their kids” at track and field meets. For many communities, high school athletics are huge source of pride and joy for all ages. Over 50 schools in South Dakota have a secret weapon in their sport playbooks--BEEF. Now in its 4th year, the Build Your Base program is helping to expose athletes, coaches and parents to the benefits of BEEF as a premier protein in an athlete’s diet.

Rooted in the heart of beef country this full circle program not only focuses on the athletes’ nutrition but has various branches that reach throughout the communities. When a school is selected for the program, contact is made by the South Dakota Beef Industry Council with local retailers in that community. Retail kits are then sent to them that contain Build Your Base promotional information, recipe cards and more. Additionally, the program has helped producers to see where their Beef Checkoff dollar is going. For beef farmers and ranchers nationwide, every dollar is important. Area producers are excited to be able to see where their Beef Checkoff dollar is going and to know that is coming back to kids and businesses in their community.

We truly believe we are standing of the edge of something huge and have only just begun to see the amazing impact this program will have on our communities, our state and now nationally. The attention to detail in the development of Build Your Base has created a sustainable program that will help to strengthen the connection of the beef industry within our communities and pass on the importance of beef in a high-quality diet across generations. Build Your Base has been developed to build habits in our athletes and showing them that the answer to many of their nutritional needs is right in their communities, perhaps even in their own backyards.

For more information about the Build Your Base program, visit

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