In addition to celebrating the hard-won freedoms that make our country great, the Fourth of July holiday is also a great time to celebrate pork! I enjoyed a grilled pork chop in the park following the Lennox, SD, Independence Day parade yesterday. Pork chops are thawing at this very moment to add even more sizzle to a family gathering at my parents’ farm today, too.
The Pork Checkoff has been working hard this summer to make sure consumers have plenty of ideas on how to incorporate more pork into their summer grilling plans. Working with one of the country’s leading retailers, the Pork Checkoff has been conducting a high-impact pork grilling promotion to reach shoppers who appreciate pork’s value. “No one spreads a value message like Walmart,” said Rob Kirchofer, national retail marketing manager for the Pork Checkoff. “This is the right place for pork to make its move this summer.”
Walmart has been highlighting pork chops and ribs from June 3 through July 6 by featuring pork in national advertising circulars, broadcasting national radio advertisements and promoting pork through online advertisements. The Walmart campaign is promoting the Checkoff’s Grill Pork Like a SteakSM message. This reflects consumers’ ability to grill their favorite pork cuts just as they would a steak.
“We are focused on letting our customers know that they do not need to have a pantry full of ingredients in order to enjoy pork,” Kirchofer said. “All they need is a little salt, pepper and a grill, and they can let the great flavor and versatility of pork take over from there – just as they would their favorite beef steak.”
To keep pork at the forefront, Walmart has been hosting a series of live grilling challenges at select Walmart stores leading up to the 2013 ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans. Walmart has been searching for the top grillmaster in the South through a series of regional cooking competitions. Regional winners will compete for the top prize and national bragging rights at the ESSENCE Family Reunion Day Food Experience Stage powered by Walmart, which kicks off the 2013 ESSENCE Festival and is celebrating food, music and culture this weekend, July 4-7. Through it all, Walmart’s promotions will keep pork top of mind with consumers.
“As the world’s largest retailer, Walmart gives producers a lot of bang for their Checkoff investment,” Kirchofer said. “Producers appreciate the opportunity to work with Walmart and look forward to partnering again in the future.”
Of course, you don’t have to be engaging in cut-throat competition to enjoy pork on the grill. What is your favorite pork chop grill recipe? If you’ve got a favorite summer pork recipe or meal, share it in the “Comments” section here, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. As for me, I’m partial to simple garlic salt, and a Penzey’s Spices shallot pepper mix on my grilled pork chops. How about you? The National Hog Farmer staff wishes our readers a safe and happy Fourth of July weekend!
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