Promotion could be key to maintaining outdoor pork share amid cost of living crisis

Outdoor-bred and reared pork could become increasingly dependent on promotions as under-pressure consumers become increasingly conscious of price, according to AHDB.

Kantar data estimates that outdoor pork has a 14% claim in the latest sales successes of primary and processed pork volumes. But, there concerns that the cost-of-living crisis could threaten the purchases of premium price products, such as outdoor bred and reared pork.

In the year ending June 12, 2022, Kantar data shows that 66% of households were buying pork or processed pigment products with an outdoor claim. As such, outdoor pork products are up 0.9% on 2019.

Outdoor bred accounts for 95% of the total outdoor market, and, according to AHDB, is the main driver of the overall increase in the rise of outdoor pork product sales; as outdoor reared and free range market shares have declined.

Outdoor claimed products are also significantly outperforming market prices, regardless of the slightly reduced price premium. An average of £8.93/kg is paid for outdoor claimed pork in British supermarkets, while the average price paid for pork rests at £6.23/kg.

However, with 40% of shoppers (a 6% rise since February 2020) saying that they now just buy the best priced pork – as the cost-of-living squeeze takes effect – the premium price of outdoor pork products may not continue to support its market success.

AHDB’s retail insight manager, Rebecca Gladman, suggested that promotional sales of outdoor pork could prove vital to mitigating the negative effects of the cost-of-living crisis. Especially as outdoor pork accounts for 47% of promotional pork sales’ volumes, in comparison to an average of 26% across the total of primary and processed pork.

With that, promotions could drive sales in certain pork product categories; Kantar data shows that sausages account for 39% of outdoor pork volumes, 53% of which are sold on promotion, so outdoor pork claimed sausages could see sale continuations amid consumer shopping changes.

Promotional sales could also help with the wider buying of both pork and red meat, more generally, as 35% of consumers say that cost is now a leading factor in their choices to give up red meat entirely, she said.

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