An in-depth report into consumer attitudes towards pork is the latest tool in the bid to boost the meat’s sales.
The category report, by the Meat and Livestock Commission on behalf of the British Pig Executive, gives marketers a fresh resource.
Chris Lukehurst, pigmeat marketing manager, said: “The idea is to help the industry’s understanding of the consumer in relation to pork.”
The report, which follows the recent sausage report, identifies a number of consumer need states; the set piece meal, the midweek proper meal, the quick tea, the party/bbq, comfort food and eating out of home.
The identification of the various need states is designed
to allow marketers to position pork more effectively. However, the research has thrown up key problems, said Lukehurst: “Pork chops are very strong in midweek proper meals, but as a need state, that is declining. But in areas like the quick tea, which is growing, pork is weak. Unless we can address these issues, we are not going to be able to deal with falling sales.”
Another problem area the report identifies is the terminology used to describe different cuts of pork. “We use the word steak to describe everything from leg steak to loin steak and shoulder steak, all of which cook and perform completely differently.”
He said the report made recommendations for calling cuts by different names, with fillet a prime example. “Fillet has a whole list of names. We need to stick to one name and let consumers recognise one of the most underused cuts.”
He said the industry also needed to introduce the terminology used with beef. “When you order beef in a restaurant, you are asked how you want it cooked, rare, medium or well done.”
He said pork needed to imitate that, with consumers helped by commonly used and understood phrases.
Ed Bedington