Beef is the top-selling meat in the U.S., with sales in 2020 increasing to $30.3 billion, a 23.7% jump year-over-year.
In Texas—the nation’s top beef-producing state—17,500 beef cattle producers, ranching families, and businesses are members of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (TSCRA), a 144-year-old organization. According to Adweek, the trade org hired The Richards Group to make a recruitment video and more.
“We Live For This Land” premiered recently at a rancher’s convention in Fort Worth, Texas, and will now be distributed in 30-second cuts on digital and social media platforms. Featuring the distinctive voice of Oscar-winning actor Tommy Lee Jones, the narration speaks to “the men and women who make this rough country work.”
The Richards Group produced the film in-house after a pandemic-related delay, shooting late this spring for eight days at seven different locations.
In related news, Texas author Larry McMurtry wrote eloquently and clearly about how the frontier and the American cowboy disappeared in the early 20th century. Granted, McMurtry wasn’t selling steaks, even though his prose comes with plenty of sizzle.
Looking back, I realize that completing Horseman, Pass By marked the end of my direct contact with the myth of the cowboy—or at least, the myth carried throughout their lives by the cowboys I knew. My father was one of those cowboys. I myself have carried that myth through more than forty books.
The Richards Group is selling steaks, plus memberships in the cattle raisers’ association. Is the mythic western the way to go here? Is this the story that ranchers tell themselves? That they’re caretakers of the land, of cattle, and an entire way of life?
It’s a good short film that’s well written, cast, shot, and edited. What I’d care to see more of or some of, is how this ranch life is directly connected to city and suburban life, and the incredible demand for beef that’s found there. In other words, I would like to see the end of the “Us versus Them” mentality that seems to be part of rural life (and urban life) today.