Is there any difference between these sentences:

  • There is beef
  • It has beef
  • We have beef


Thank you.

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Your first example uses there as a general indicator, as explained in Cambridge's essential British English. It is saying that beef exists, presumably in some specific context. That context might be the current location - meaning "there is beef here", or it might be that someone is trying to choose ingredients for a meal they are planning, and decided that they can't use pork or chicken, and someone suggests beef as a possibility by saying "there is beef", meaning "there is beef as an option".

The other two are uses of to have to indicate possession. While it indicates possession, it can also indicate inclusion or incorporation. So, in your first example we have the pronoun it, and whatever it refers to possesses, either in the sense of ownership or by inclusion, beef. For example, you might be pointing to a stir fry and saying "it has beef", by which you mean "it has beef in it".

The third says that some group or organisation, of which the speaker is part, "has beef". For example, if you were in a shop and someone was asking for meat, you might say "we have beef", meaning "we have beef that we can sell to you".


They are all different.

The first sentence has a "dummy subject" and is roughly the same as saying "beef exists here"

The second has a real subject, "It". I don't know what "it" refers to, but this thing owns some beef.

The third has a different subject "We" (It the speaker and one or more other people). Now this group of people has some beef.

All are grammatically correct, but mean different things

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