Top Cut: A Beef Contest

Beef Contest

New York Agriculture in the Classroom and the New York State Beef Council partner each year to offer an exciting cross-curricular program for middle and high school students to engage with and understand beef production. This experiential learning contest allows students to creatively develop a marketing strategy for a product of their choice, while learning about the multitude of agricultural careers and skills it takes to develop and sell a product. Students will also learn about beef production and beef nutrition as a result of participation.


Students will work as a group to develop a marketing and nutrition plan for a beef-centric product or recipe.


3rd through 12th grade students working in groups or as a classroom in New York State are eligible to participate. Pre-registration is required in the respective grade divisions. Multiple groups or classrooms from the same school may participate. FFA chapters, home school groups, and private schools are also eligible to participate.


Contest Timeline

Pre-Registration is open until October 11, 2019
Contest submissions are due December 19, 2019
Winners will be announced no later than February 6, 2020


Prizes for this contest are generously awarded by the New York Beef Council.


You are encouraged to partner with a local beef producer to encourage your students to learn about the entire beef production system. If you would like assistance in identifying a beef producer in your area, please contact Katherine Brosnan with the New York Beef Council with your interest.


All classrooms must pre-register to participate in the contest. With preregistration, your classroom will receive a True Beef DVD and paired curriculum guide valued at $30 provided at no cost courtesy of New York Agriculture in the Classroom.

True Beef: From Pasture to Plate (DVD) – This is an innovative educational documentary that follows high school students as they learn about the entire process of beef production. The documentary features culinary and agricultural high school students and is designed to teach students where their food comes from while learning the importance of farming and ranching.

True Beef Educator Guide – This series of lesson plans supports the documentary "True Beef". The guide contains 8 lessons designed to follow along with the chapters in the documentary. STEM connections have been included for all lessons and it is easy for teachers to make connections across the curriculum.

Beef for the Classroom Grant

The final page of your contest pre-registration will be an application for the Beef for the Classroom Grant. By filling out this short application you can earn up to $100 reimbursed for purchasing beef products for your students to cook with during your recipe development. Learn more about Beef for the Classroom from the New York Beef Council.

Contest Procedures

Additional Lessons and Classroom Tools


Please direct any questions you have about this contest to Katie Carpenter.

Explore the Past Winning Schools and Projects

Check out the impressive submissions from the past winners of the Top Cut Beef Contest!

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