The University of Nebraska-Lincoln Dairy Store, located on UNL’s East Campus, has expanded its line of products to include frozen meats from the university’s animal science department.
The meats being sold at the store now include rib eyes, T-bones, porterhouse, tenderloins and sirloin steaks.
LeRoy Braden, the UNL Dairy Store’s manager, says he would like to get bratwursts and polish sausages in the future.
“Anything they are able to give us, we would be willing to sell,” Braden said.
Curtis Weller, department head of food science and technology and director of the food processing center, says the hours of the UNL Dairy Store were a major factor in this expansion.
The UNL Dairy Store, which is part of the university’s food processing center, has sold the department’s products in the past, including summer sausages and cheese. This expansion is meant to help promote even more of their products.
“Since we’re open a little bit more than they are, we said if you’re interested we’d be willing to market some of your products through the Dairy Store,” Braden said. “We just wanted to help our friends in the food science department.”
Braden started making plans for this expansion months ago, and the meats arrived on Nov. 11.
Braden said he enjoys partnering with the animal science department because he wants to promote Nebraska products as much as possible.
“Promoting them and having them promote us helps us have a little bit more variety,” Braden said.
Braden said he has noticed the expansion gaining attention on social media, especially Facebook. A post from Nov. 17 promoting this addition received 275 reactions and has been shared 31 times.
“We’ve sold about 75 percent of the product we have been given so far, but we weren’t given much to begin with,” Braden said. “It is kind of a trial and error right now.”
When customers walk into the UNL Dairy Store, the meats are located in a freezer to the left of the front counter, which Braden said was a strategic placement.
“In the summer, the line will sometimes be out the door, so people will have time to sit there and look,” Braden said. “When people are standing in line and thinking ‘I really want to make steaks on the grill tomorrow’ that’s when it will be really nice.”
According to Weller, Braden is going to be in charge of promoting these new meats. He will be using targeted marketing strategies to let people know when new products are available.
Braden says as long as the demand is high, he will continue to expand his partnership with the animal science department.
“It is a little more convenient for people to buy it here than at the meat lab,” Braden said. “We’re really excited to partner with them. We’re all just one big family here at the university.”