DES MOINES, Iowa — The U.S. Department of Agriculture has
announced that June 2013 frozen pork supplies are down 14 percent from the
previous month and down nearly 5 percent on a year-over-year basis, reflecting
higher demand for pork.
According to the July 23, 2013, Daily Livestock Report,
total pork inventories at the end of June were 564.9 million pounds, or 4.7
percent lower than in June 2012.
The Daily Livestock Report — written by economists Steve
Meyer and Len Steiner — also noted that “pork stocks normally decline in June,
but this year the month-to-month change in pork inventories was 14.3 percent,
the largest volume depletion in 20 years.”
“At a point in time when pork production is high and
domestic supplies are up, this shift in inventories is great news for our
producers,” said Karen Richter, a farmer from Montgomery, Minn. and president of
the National Pork Board. “This market shift demonstrates that pork is hot right
now and has a momentum that continues to build throughout the traditional summer
The Pork Checkoff recently wrapped up a six-week radio
advertising campaign in an effort to capitalize on new pork chop names and
favorable pork prices for consumers.
The report of lower frozen inventories is occurring on the
heels of both the consumer campaign and aggressive promotions with major grocery
retailers. The retail promotions featured ribs and chops, with specific advice
at the meat case to cook pork chops “like a steak.”
“For the past eight weeks, we have been reaching out to
consumers and it is paying off,” Richter said. “By building relationships and
launching promotional campaigns with America’s top food retailers, we are seeing
a boon in pork sales.”
Consumer education about the value and versatility of pork,
the adoption of new pork cut names and reinforcement of pork’s ideal cooking
temperature were the Pork Checkoff’s key consumer messages. The new porterhouse
pork chop, ribeye pork chop and New York pork chop were specifically featured in
the summer marketing campaign.
“The previous nomenclature was confusing to consumers,”
Richter said. “We listened to our consumers and chose the new cut names in order
to enhance the value in the meat cuts and used new, simplified labels that
better explain proper cooking techniques. Pork remains a great value for
consumers today, and the surge in pork sales this summer is great news for pork
producers, as well.”
The National Pork Board has responsibility for
checkoff-funded research, promotion and consumer information projects and for
communicating with pork producers and the public.
Through a legislative national Pork Checkoff, pork producers
invest $0.40 for each $100 value of hogs sold. Importers of pork products
contribute a like amount, based on a formula.
The Pork Checkoff funds national and state programs in
advertising, consumer information, retail and foodservice marketing, export
market promotion, production improvement, technology, swine health, pork safety
and environmental management.
For information on checkoff-funded programs, pork producers
can call the Pork Checkoff Service Center at (800) 456-7675 or check the
Internet at www.pork.org.