WOOSTER, Ohio – Oct. 4, 2018 – On Oct. 3, guests, family and friends gathered at McKean Bros. Angus, Mercer, Pa., to celebrate the painting of its barn with the Certified Angus Beef ® brand logo – the 37th stop of a cross-country journey. Farmers, family members, neighbors and other special guests shared a meal with the McKean family as they watched paint dry.
The gathering was one of 40 planned in 2018, as the Certified Angus Beef ® brand celebrates 40 years of bringing the best Angus beef to consumers. Painting the brand’s familiar logo on 40 barns across America is not just an old-school marketing approach, but a tip of the hat to the farmers and ranchers who created the brand in 1978 and lead it today, and a way to celebrate connections and community.
“This effort is a tangible symbol of the valuable, and interconnected, roles our partners play in guiding the Certified Angus Beef ® brand from farm to table,” says Tracey Erickson, vice president of marketing. “It’s an honor for us to join their efforts in honoring our roots: family farmers and ranchers who have always been at the heart of this brand.”
Few symbols represent vintage Americana like a barn, where farm life is centered from generation to generation and, oftentimes, celebrations held. Each barn has a unique story, much like the Certified Angus Beef ® brand and family farmers and ranchers who raise Angus cattle. The McKeans are representative of this heritage.
After Greg McKean returned home from Penn State University, he knew he wanted to do one job: raise Angus cattle just like his family had done for three generations. Greg, along with his wife, Peggy, have also raised three children on their homestead nestled in western Pennsylvania, teaching them the values needed to care for the livestock. “Taking care of the animals is the highest priority of our family,” Peggy says. “I could tell you stories of late nights or missed basketball games, because there was a cow in labor.” The couple, however, does more outside of their part in the beef journey, as Greg pays close attention to the entire beef production process, from pasture to plate – a passion that stems from his family’s ties to meat processing and retail stores.
The McKeans’ barn was painted by Troy Freeman, of Free Sky Studios of Springfield, Ill. Freeman is an experienced mural and large-scale painter for businesses, cities and townships, amusement parks, schools, residences and more, as well as the illustrator of 15 books and the founder of a graphics and web design business. While painting barns for the Certified Angus Beef ® brand, he enjoys meeting farming families and learning more about their unique stories, while celebrating their shared goals and values.
Painting takes two to three days at each barn site. The first barn was painted the week of Jan. 15 in Ocala, Fla., at Baldwin Angus Ranch, located along the well-traveled Interstate 75. The last barns to be painted will be near the brand’s headquarters in Wooster, Ohio.
About the Certified Angus Beef ® brand
Since 1978, the Certified Angus Beef ® brand has signified a mark of distinction on restaurant menus and in grocery store meat cases. It all began 40 years ago with a group of family farmers and ranchers determined to create and, still today, bring the best Angus beef to the table. To celebrate their vision and dedication to quality, we’re painting 40 barns in rural communities across the country with the brand’s logo – celebrating both the milestone and people at the center of the brand’s success. Visit CertifiedAngusBeef.com, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to follow the #BrandtheBarn journey