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New research helps identify the future pork consumer

Research shows pork consumption is declining across every generation and is at risk of becoming a protein of the past. Baby Boomers have been the primary consumers of fresh pork and they are aging out. Gen Z and Millennials don’t buy fresh pork at the same rate as older generations. The good news is the decline in pork sales is reversible. The pork industry needs to unite around a common goal of making pork relevant to younger consumers.

Following one of the worst years of profitability for pork producers, the National Pork Board's directors recognizes that in addition to building trust and adding value, generating long-term demand for pork must be a top priority for the industry.

Turning research into results
To grow future demand, we must identify our future consumers and meet them where they are. Consumer Connect is a new tool NPB has invested Pork Checkoff dollars in to understand even more about our core consumers. In particular, pork must overcome awareness and perception challenges among Millennials and Gen Z. The path to long-term demand breaks through to these consumers by tackling their largest drivers of choice: taste, nutrition and convenience.

Consumer Connect will help NPB make those connections and share the right information with each type of consumer. By utilizing the segmentation data, we can make decisions to align pork with their preferences and lifestyles, leading our messaging with taste and flavor.

Meeting consumers where they are: Busting myths about pork
Millennials and Gen Z rank the taste and flavor of fresh pork below most other proteins.

46% of Millennials consider pork to be an indulgent choice.

57% of Millennials are concerned about foodborne illness from undercooked pork.

Unveiling consumer segments
Consumer Connect provides a new method for understanding consumer needs and driving growth in the pork industry. This initiative is the result of extensive research into pork consumers, the industry and potential growth opportunities. By analyzing research insights and understanding consumer feelings and decision-making processes, NPB identified seven unique consumer segments, each characterized by specific motivations, needs and emotions.

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