The recently announced decision to make Tyson Foods’ Chairman’s Reserve brand exclusively Angus this spring comes in response to consumer demand and a growing Angus cattle population.
But for more insight into the shift, The Shelby Report recently caught up with Ozlem Worpel, director of Fresh Meats Marketing at Tyson Fresh Meats, the beef and pork subsidiary of Springdale, Arkansas-based Tyson Foods.
“Everybody knows that Angus is a breed that is associated with quality. And when you look at consumers’ perception, they think of Angus before they think of even prime choice select as quality attributes,” Worpel said.
Despite restaurants reopening, the foodservice industry is expected to post a loss of at least 17.7 percent for 2020, according to Tyson. That will be absorbed by retail business.
More farmers are raising Angus cattle, which allows Tyson to deliver more of this “restaurant-quality” associated meat. Tyson wanted to differentiate while meeting consumer’s desires for Angus beef.
Both Chairman’s Reserve Beef product lines will offer a fully supported Angus brand. The Chairman’s Reserve Platinum Angus Beef program will enter the elite USDA upper one-third Choice Angus beef category, serving as the highest quality brand in Tyson’s portfolio.
The Premium Beef Program will have a Small50 marbling score and brings the best aspects of a supported Angus brand to consumers looking for affordable quality.
“We believe that we had to bring in affordable consistent product,” Worpel said. “We had to bring in restaurant quality. We had to include Angus to resonate more with the consumers. And with the amount of high-quality cattle coming into our plants – and also the quantity of the Angus cattle that we are getting – told us that we were ready for the change because availability was definitely an important thing in our mind.”
A Tyson Fresh Meats study conducted late last year found that 96 percent of consumers recognize the term Angus beef and associate it with quality. A third of primary grocery shoppers purchase USDA Choice Angus beef at least once a month, according to the same study.
“When we talk about brands, what differentiates you from your everyday non-branded choice, for example, is the support you get from a brand,” Worpel said. “And we are committed that Chairman’s Reserve is one of the best supportive brands in the marketplace.