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News 1636 views update:Dec 9, 2008

Chicken sales increase over 2008

Chicken sales increased 6.7% in 2008, according to "The Fresh Meat Market in the U.S.: Beef, Chicken, Pork, Turkey and Lamb in Retail and Foodservice", from Packaged Facts.

Chicken increased 6.3% at retail level in 2008. "The healthfulness of white meat has been hardwired into the American consumer psyche, and now natural and organic claims give chicken a leg up among consumers looking for prime cuts," said Packaged Facts publisher Tatjana Meerman.

"Natural" label on meat

Of retail meat, 31% was labelled "natural" in 2008, up 7% from 2007.  Meerman stated that natural and organic claims – including free-range or cage-free chicken, grass-fed beef, humanely raised veal, and crate-free pork – are being met favourably by consumers, who are increasingly concerned about food quality, food contamination and the environmental and ethical implications of their food choices.

It is estimated that 50% of retail meat was supplier-branded in 2008, up 4% from 2007. It is believed that branding helps establish confidence in consumers. "Branding will become super-important going forward," said Meerman, adding that consumers are more concerned about food safety so generic meat in the refrigerator case will no longer be as compelling as branded meat from a trusted manufacturer."

Related link:

Packaged facts - The Fresh Meat Market in the U.S.: Beef, Chicken, Pork, Turkey and Lamb in Retail and Foodservice

Natalie Berkhout

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