Pork Checkoff funded study on niche pork buying

by Editor fleischwirtschaft.com
Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The market potential for niche food products remains large, and consumers buy niche products because they desire the freshness, flavour and healthful qualities.

To get a clearer picture of niche pork’s potential, the Pork Checkoff funded a study to determine the factors that influence a consumer’s decision to purchase a niche food product, the U.S. National Pork Board recently announced.

The following results were reported: About two thirds (63%) of consumers typically buy niche food products at a conventional grocery store, about half (53%) purchase them at a farmers market or food coop, 37% purchase them directly from local farmers and another third (33%) buy them at a specialty food store.

More than half (53%) of niche pork purchasers say they buy that product at a conventional grocery store. Another one-third (33%) purchase niche pork at specialty food stores, 23% purchase niche pork products at a farmers market or food coop, and 20% buy it directly from a local farmer.

When asked how frequently they buy each type of niche food product, purchasers indicate that they buy niche fruits and vegetables on average 37 times a year (about three times a month). Niche fresh or frozen pork is purchased about 16 times a year (or a little more than once a month).

Healthfulness was given as the most important reason for purchasing niche pork by 25% of respondents. Other most important reasons included freshness, quality (14%), and flavor or taste (14%). When all mentions of reasons for purchasing niche pork products were combined, more than half of respondents cited quality, flavor or taste, freshness, and healthfulness as most important.