The U.S. Meat Export Federation is looking at growth opportunities for branded, thick-cut products in two new initiatives to increase American pork sales. In Japan – thinly sliced meats are standard – but USMEF-Japan hired popular cooking instructor Rika Yukimasa to develop U.S. pork recipes and introduce Japanese consumers to techniques that work for larger cuts during a two-month promotion that ends at the end of this year. A group of 160 food bloggers and homemakers are learning easy cooking roast pork recipes from Yukimasa for this current promotion. As for branded pork – Japan’s competition in this market has more than 400 domestic brands – but U.S. pork is gaining a place in the market. USMEF conducted an American Branded Pork Campaign to encourage consumers to purchase U.S. branded pork earlier this year. The campaign focus was to traders and distributors – but now they are adding activities to increase awareness of the quality and value of these products to consumers. During the first eight months of this year – Japan purchased 677.8-million pounds – or 1.3-billion dollars-worth – of U.S. pork – a six-percent increase in value on six-percent lower volumes compared to 2011.
Source: NAFB News service