Pork Industry Working to Address the Evolving Changes and Trends in the Market and on the FarmFri, 28 Jul 2017 16:15:01 CDT
As the Millennial demographic becomes increasingly more important as a consumer-base, different segments within the ag industry are scrambling to find ways in which to reach them as an audience and promote their respective products. Executive Director of the Oklahoma Pork Council Roy Lee Lindsey, sat down with Ron Hays, farm director of the Radio Oklahoma Ag Network, recently to discuss what the pork industry is doing to attract the new generation of domestic consumers. You can hear the complete exchange between Hays and Lindsey, by clicking or tapping the LISTEN BAR below at the bottom of the story.
Millennials, today, are the largest segment of the economy in terms of buying power,” Lindsey said. “Our National Pork Board is working on a new focus, if you will, that shifts from direct consumer advertising and more into building relationships with the retailers and the food service people that sell our product.”
Lindsey explains that the industry is trying to address what questions these people have; what information they need, and how the industry can best deliver that information so that retailers can be better informed and have more context about pork. Lindsey believes for them to have a deeper understanding of the product will result is them being able to better market pork and answer any questions customers may ask them.
“It’s all about selling pork, but one of the ways we’ve got to do that is we’ve got to talk to them about how they buy pork,” he said, “what influences their decisions and what things we as an industry need to be doing to meet their needs and their desires as we look down the road.”
Changing gears - Hays inquired about the state of Oklahoma’s pork industry. He prefaced with explaining that a trend has slowly developed over time in the state, where producers are repurposing finishing barns to house sows. He asked Lindsey if this trend would continue, and if so, why?
Lindsey explained that several new processing facilities were coming online soon, and so the industry is working to grow its hog herd to supply these facilities as they begin working up to their full capacity. According to him, what’s happening in Oklahoma is only part of a larger trend. Today, producers prefer to keep their market hogs close to the plants. And so, in the interest of maintaining a high level of health in the hog population, producers are moving the sow operations further away from hog dense areas.
“So, place like Oklahoma that are not really hog dense, are great places,” Lindsey said. “We’ve already got the infrastructure and have a public that’s accustomed to there being hog farms around. So, that trend is going to continue for us.”
Lindsey estimates the hog population, in this tradeoff between finishing hogs and sows, will grow some 8 to 10 percent above what it is now, over the next two to three years.
Lindsey will join Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays for his weekly In the Field segment on KWTV News9 in the Oklahoma City area on Saturday morning at 6:40 a.m.
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