Tyson is adding a new line of premium Chairman's Reserve Prime Pork, according to an article in The Shelby Report.
Kent Harrison, vice president of marketing and premium programs for Tyson Fresh Meats, told The Shelby Report that less than a fifth of pork produced would qualify for this status. Marbling, color and pH level are all factors for the ultra-premium line.
- Being delivered ready for retailers to trim and pack, this high-end pork grade is intended to let retailers “add their own touch to merchandising the product,” The Shelby Report said.
High quality pork seldom is top-of-mind when consumers meat shop. But it could be.
A few very selective butchers have long offered something on this level, but they're decreasing in number as the pressures of the marketplace – bring it in cheap, sell it nearly so – increasingly rule the roost where chicken is taking over from red meats as consumers' favorite. (And supply of top-quality pork is not something mass producers running feed lots favor.)
There's no question that consumers want higher-quality meat — beef and otherwise. Demand for free-from, grass-fed and organic meat is increasing, as consumers' interest in transparency and quality extends to the meat counter. People even in rural areas, where food dollars often are stretched as far as possible, flock to sales of fresh birds, and herd up where premium pork or beef is offered. They don't quibble over nickels, or even half-dollars per pound.
Just as they do at farmers markets, special displays of prime products will provide the results grocery retailers want. And, considering prices of meat are at a low point, now is a good time for a producer to introduce a super-prime product. Consumers who are willing to spend a little extra now may continue to want to keep on spending once they trust the quality of the product.