McDonald’s names Flagship Farmer, celebrates commitment to Canadian beef

First-ever recipient recognized for innovative ranching practices

Stephen Hughes on his Longview ranch while filming a McDonald’s commercial about beef sustainability.

On Dec. 10, McDonald’s Canada announced Stephen Hughes of Chinook Ranch as its first-ever Canadian representative for the company’s Flagship Farmer Program.

Hughes was selected for his long-term commitment to innovative ranching practices, including year-round, rotational grazing techniques. As McDonald’s Canada’s Flagship Farmer, Hughes will inspire and inform fellow ranchers, share his experiences, showcase the best practices of Canadian beef producers and engage stakeholders on the impact he’s achieved at Chinook Ranch.

“I am humbled to be selected as the first McDonald’s Flagship Farmer in Canada,” the Longview, Alberta rancher said. “I am happy to be an example of all the good work that is going on in my industry; and I appreciate and recognize the commitment that McDonald’s has made to Canadian ranchers.”

The McDonald’s Flagship Farmer Program is a part of the global organization’s commitment to support, promote and amplify sustainable practices in agriculture. The program enables farmers, ranchers, producers and growers to share knowledge and experience with other farmers around the world, helping to drive positive change across the global agriculture industry while helping protect the viability of their farms.

“McDonald’s commitment to using 100% Canadian beef and supporting Canadian ranchers and farmers remains a key business priority,” said John Betts, President & Chief Executive Officer, McDonald’s Canada. “Bringing the Flagship Farmer Program to Canada is the next logical step in our beef sustainability journey and helps us respond to growing consumer demand for responsibly-sourced beef. By working together on initiatives such as this, everybody benefits–our business, our suppliers and our guests.”

The longstanding relationship between McDonald’s Canada and Chinook Ranch has helped establish McDonald’s as a global leader in beef sustainability and represents the organization’s unwavering commitment to Canada’s beef industry.

The McDonald’s Flagship Farmer Program has engaged farmers and ranchers in Europe for several years. The program’s current focus is on identifying Flagship Farmer beef producers in each of the top 10 countries from which McDonald’s sources its beef, including Canada (the third-largest supplier of beef to the McDonald’s system on a global basis), the United States, Australia, Brazil, France, New Zealand, Germany, Ireland, Poland and United Kingdom.

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