The chicken category continues to play a very large role
for retailers. Talk about what is happening in the market
as far as retailers are concerned.
Andy Urban: The fundamental advantages of chicken over
other proteins will continue to keep the category strong. The
big changes, however, are happening inside the category.
Consumer choice continues to drive the overall category, with
no-antibiotics-ever and organic poultry continuing their double-digit growth again in the last year. Those two segments
are largely responsible for overall category growth, so it’s not
surprising that many retailers offering no-antibiotics-ever and
organic choices are realizing dramatic category growth. That
trend is likely to continue as consumers become more and more
engaged in their food choices, which includes questions about
how the food was raised. No-antibiotics-ever and organic products are also attractive to Millennials, so these choices are even
more important to the next generation of shoppers.
What is Perdue doing in terms of merchandising and marketing to help drive sales? Talk about the “Perdue Way.”
The “Perdue Way” is the way we have been running our business
from the very beginning. It is about listening to consumers, and
continuously innovating to give them more quality, more flavor,
more convenience and more peace of mind. It started when
Frank Perdue put the family name on chicken, and continues
with Jim Perdue. The “Perdue Way” is our accountability to consumers. Today, consumers expect more; they are worried about
how their food was raised as much as they care about what is in
the package. We believe in offering up the products today’s consumers are looking for, and providing them choice and transparency. That includes chicken, turkey and pork with relevant claims
including an all-vegetarian diet with no animal by-products,
raised with no antibiotics ever, Non-GMO Project Verification and
USDA organic. A big part of that is “No Antibiotics Ever.” At the
same time, consumers are hearing a lot of confusing claims about
antibiotics; “No Antibiotics Ever” leaves no doubt.
Also important to retailers, we continue to advertise and
promote the advantages of these choices, especially “No Anti-
biotics Ever.” While others may be
offering a few no-antibiotics-ever
or organic items to satisfy existing
demand, we will be offering more
than 100 items at retail made with
Perdue No Antibiotics Chicken.
What product introductions are on the horizon?
Our biggest news this year is the conversion of our further processed chicken segments to “No Antibiotics Ever”—more than
100 SKUs. Consumers will be able to purchase the Perdue products they have known and loved, now with the added assurance
of “No Antibiotics Ever.” This is going to transform the category
by moving no-antibiotics-ever chicken from niche labels and
sub-brands to mainstream products. We are also rolling out
new products with exciting flavors, using no-antibiotics-ever
chicken. Consumers will not have to decide between chicken
raised without antibiotics that they feel good about, and the
convenience they need in today’s busy lifestyle. We’re giving
What do retailers need to do to drive sales?
Make the investment in providing consumers with choices in
the proteins they purchase today by offering a wide variety
and capitalizing on the raised-without-antibiotics and organic
trends that have gone mainstream in the last few years. Today’s
Millennial shoppers are very different from the shoppers of the
past. They want food that aligns with their definition of wholesome and healthy. Today’s natural shopper is not just the affluent mom from the suburbs; young consumers are prioritizing
their spending around the food they feel good buying for themselves and their families.
How does the future look for the category?
Extremely bright, especially for those retailers ahead of the
trends toward no-antibiotics-ever and organic. It is clear the
retailers winning in meat over the last few years have been the
ones providing choices to their consumers.
WITH ANDY URBAN
Andy Urban, senior vice president of sales for Perdue Foods, says today’s
chicken consumers are looking for choice and transparency.