Initiative Provides Marketing Opportunity for PNW Beef in Japan
Halstrom: "It's an initiative based on marketing efforts in Japan. Traditionally in Japan the U.S. share has been very large in the national retail chains. But one of the areas that is growing is the local, regional retailers the medium and smaller-sized retailers that traditionally have relied on domestic Japanese beef or maybe a little bit of Australian beef — but is an area that the U.S. beef hasn't penetrated as much. So what we've done is we have used the story of the Pacific Northwest — specifically Washington, Oregon and Idaho — out of some key packing plants in this area. We've developed a story that talks about production practices — farm to fork so to speak — and we've marketed it in Japan into these medium and smaller regional chains. As I've said this is the third year running and we are starting to see some dramatic results. Some of these chains have reported 65 percent growth last year over the previous year. That combined with the macroeconomics of the U.S. situation and Australia — the timing couldn't be better to expand the U.S. beef share in Japan."