The National Chicken Council has launched a transparency initiative for consumers who would like to know about their manufacturing methods. The series of three videos comes after the organization conducted a national survey to identify consumer trends related to the consumption of chicken.
The survey was conducted to find trends that leading US poultry producers can use to better their marketing efforts. From the survey results, the National Chicken Council found that transparency was a top consumer concern with 90 percent of the 1,004 adults surveyed claiming that they are interested in learning more about chicken processing. In addition, the survey found that almost 40 percent of these consumers are interested in knowing how chickens are cared for.
“We know that people want more information about chicken production and that most have not visited a chicken farm, so we are bringing the farm to them,” said Tom Super, spokesperson for the National Chicken Council. “Through our virtual reality tours, viewers are able to see the way most chickens are hatched, raised and processed in the US – it’s a fully immersive experience.”
The 360-degree virtual reality series takes consumers through the three main stages of a broiler chicken’s life. The first video is shot in a hatchery where chicken eggs are fertilized, incubated and hatched into chickens that are raised for meat. The next video takes consumers through a broiler chicken farm where chickens at transported to during the same day that they hatch. The video highlights sanitation efforts, the humane treatment of the chickens and the fact that they are not fed antibiotics or other chemicals. The final video is shot in a processing plant where chickens go after reaching a proper market weight. The chickens are then humanely slaughtered and processed under the supervision of USDA personnel prior to being shipped to restaurants and grocery stores.
“The virtual reality experience is a natural extension of the Chicken Check-In program, which invites consumers to see how chickens are raised and produced in the US,” said Super. “We’re proud to give a close look at our birds, their lives and how they get to our tables. We plan to bring the experience to consumers not only online, but to trade shows, schools, and various other events.”
The National Chicken Council’s video series incorporates key concerns in the chicken manufacturing process such as what they are fed, their living conditions, how they are slaughtered and how the entire process is kept sanitary. In addition, the organization made 360 degree videos which add to their goal of being completely transparent.
This new marketing initiative sets a pace for more meat manufacturers as they look for ways to attract socially-conscious consumers. With plant-based protein sales on the rise, the meat industry is facing competition as consumers turn away from meat products due to animal welfare and environmental reasons. This is why major food companies have been promoting new animal welfare standards and environmental initiatives, which have proven to be successful in the current consumer market. This is why it is likely that more meat manufacturers will look for ways to portray transparency in their manufacturing facilities.