“Given the historical numbers, it is perceivable that the presence of non-branded labels in beef will continue to shrink in the coming years in favor of beef with national or private label branding,” said Erkin Peksoz, IRI consultant.
Additionally, IRI data shows that for fresh chicken and fresh pork, the dollar share for private label and national brand products was higher than the volume share in 2019. This indicates a price premium for branded products and represents the equity in the brand.4 Because the branding of beef has lagged behind other proteins, retailers aren’t able to fully capitalize on this opportunity in beef.
“Dollars per volume performance of private label and national brands is stronger than non-branded products both in fresh chicken and fresh pork,” Peksoz said. “This dynamic implies the value generated by brand equity. Currently, fresh beef isn’t reaping the benefits afforded by branding at an optimal level. Because we know that differentiated or branded products command a premium over commodity products, it is conceivable that fresh beef would benefit from increased presence of private label and national brands.”
Calling out purchase drivers, like nutrition and health information, on meat packages is helpful to many consumers. Having protein amounts highlighted on the package is a feature that’s important to 87 percent of shoppers, yet is a hugely missed opportunity in the meat case.1
Building a private label brand in the meat case doesn’t have to be difficult. Many packers and processors will collaborate directly with their retailer customers to create a brand that works for the store’s consumers.
“We work with our customers to develop long-term relationships based on trust and the ability to deliver products and services that meet their needs,” said Frank Tarantino, president of Thomas Foods International, USA. “Our private label program is based on adaptability. For example, since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have been working with clients on packaging that provides a better experience for the increased curbside pickup grocery retailer business and developing meat kits they can brand. We work with them from concept to finished product on brand development.”
Packer/processor partners also can assist in building a more robust brand story or help with marketing to the specific consumers a retailer is focusing on.