Thursday, June 10, 2010

Pork looks to step out from behind label of "The other white meat," needs to address taste issues

In an effort to rebrand the industry, the National Pork Board may soon abandon its 23-year-old tagline and refer to pork as something other than "The Other White Meat," board Vice President Ceci Snyder said at the World Pork Expo on Wednesday, Dan Piller of the Des Moines Register reports. "New consumer surveys show that the line has little bite," and Snyder added that the industry is concerned about consumer suggestions that pork lacks taste.

"Consumers want healthy food, and pork definitely is healthy," Snyder told Piller. "But they want taste and variety as well, and we have to communicate that." Snyder said the board will continue to use "The Other White Meat" in a limited way to preserve its trademark, but offered no glimpse at what the new campaign would look like. "I tell the pork people that they're the Oreo cookie, caught in the middle between beef and chicken," Wes Jamison, professor of communications at Palm Beach Atlantic University, told Piller. "That gives them an identity problem."
The tagline was "developed in 1987 as pork's response to concerns about the effects of red-meat consumption on weight and heart health," Piller writes. Red-meat consumption has dropped by 25 percent since 1960, but much of that market is believed to have gone to poultry and fish. Even if the pork industry decides to change its tagline, it will still need to address the underlying issues surrounding the meat's popularity. "The pork people should ask themselves why the 'white meat' line isn't working anymore," Drew McClellan of McClellan Marketing in Des Moines told Piller. "Taste may be a problem. I was in my 20s before I learned that pork could taste good." (Read more)

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