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Marketing Tips for Turkey Producers

05 April 2013

UK - More than 160 traditional turkey producers including a number from Scotland and Ireland took part in Kelly Turkeys poult customers open day.

Kelly Turkeys
Andy Spencer [left] looks on as David French — both from Poll Hill Garden Centre Butchers, Sevenoaks, Kent — joints a turkey at the poult customers open day

After a practical demonstration of how turkeys are processed at the Little Claydons plant, the visitors gathered at the FarmGate Hatchery at Danbury where managing director Paul Kelly urged producers to play to their strengths in promoting sales through butchers, farm shops and delicatessens - in total more than matching the 8573 supermarkets.

The horsemeat scandal had shown up the value of local provenance, he said. “Add to that the warmth towards small family businesses and the appeal of artisan production methods — and the traditional turkey is an attractive product in the modern context,” he stated.

He advocated using the ‘personal touch’ in promotion, personalising the identity of the turkeys and using lifestyle pictures that would appeal to consumers at point of sale.

Clive Wreathall, whose family are one of the largest producers of traditional turkeys, spoke of marketing their Appledore brand through 150 independent outlets across the South East, and of their ‘butcher days’ each year — even presenting the butchers with branded aprons.

The meeting also heard about the value of a good website in marketing turkeys. Asa Howard, finance and administration manager of Kelly Turkeys, said retail sales through their own website had grown from 5 to 75 per cent in 12 years. The biggest increase was access from mobile devices, now almost one third, with 43 per cent of visits out of office hours and 92 per cent providing an e-mail address.

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