Bernard Matthews is looking to reinvigorate consumer interest in cooked turkey with a new, American-themed sliced smoked turkey meats range.
The East River Smokehouse Co range will launch in the mults on Monday (3 September) with three products - New York Shaved Roast Turkey, Tennessee Hickory Smoked Turkey and Kentucky Spiced Turkey (all rsp: £2 per pack). A spokesman said Bernard Matthews was “not prepared to reveal which mults the range was going into.”
The launch comes as total cooked turkey sales have declined by 10.6% in volume and 24.2% in value over the past 12 months [Kantar Worldpanel 52 w/e 5 August 2012].
Commercial director Deborah Ewan said Bernard Matthews was keen to bring innovation to the category, which she believed had “huge” potential. “Consumers are trading down from ready-made sandwiches, but are still looking for excellent quality and interesting tastes and flavours,” she said. “The market for cooked sliced meats needs to up its game.”
Ewan added Bernard Matthews believed the East River Smokehouse brand had the potential to generate in excess of £10m in retail sales. Research had shown consumers were 48% more likely to try turkey if it had been smoked and consumer tests of the new brand had been encouraging, she said.
The Grocer revealed Bernard Matthew’s plans to launch East River in May, when the company registered a trademark for the brand.