CHICAGO -- Several top retail chains will be participating in a summer veal-grilling promotion sponsored by the Veal Committee of the Beef Industry Council here.
The six-week event, to be held at stores operating in the metropolitan areas of Chicago, Philadelphia and New York -- all markets with higher-than-average veal consumption -- will run from July 18 to August 31.
Veal consumption has been on a downward trend in the United States for the past several years, with current national consumption at about 1 pound per person. The Veal Committee is hoping to turn that trend around through a long-term marketing plan launched last fall, of which this event is a part.
Using the industry's slogan, "Veal. Discover the Special Choice," the event is focusing on ways to incorporate veal into summer barbecues, with emphasis on increasing sales of veal shoulder, rib and loin.
In partnership with Lawry's Foods, Los Angeles, a distributor and restaurant operator, each participating retail chain will hold a two-day in-store demo on August 5 and 6. It's billed as a "grilled-veal-tasting weekend for consumers."
So far, participants include Jewel Food Stores, Melrose Park, Ill.; Dominick's Finer Foods, Northlake, Ill.; Cub Foods, Naperville, Ill.; Acme Markets, Malvern, Pa.; Wakefern Food Corp., Elizabeth, N.J.; A&P, Montvale, N.J.; Pathmark, Woodbridge, N.J.; Grand Union, Wayne, N.J.; King Kullen, Westbury, N.Y., and Red Apple Cos., New York.
Also, the program is being supported by a four-week radio ad campaign that allows retailers to insert store names twice within 60-second announcements. The messages will be targeted to adults 35 and older with incomes of $40,000 and up.
Retailers will also be provided with promotional in-store point-of-purchase materials including on-pack recipe stickers for grilled veal entrees.
"We expect consumer veal demand to increase during the promotion, and that the promotion will help boost veal sales into the fall," said Floyd Many, chairman of the Veal Committee and a veal producer from Hobart, N.Y.
The summer grilling promotion also ties in food service establishments. Fifteen restaurants in each of the three cities will feature a grilled veal entree for a three-week period.