How to prep your meat case for the holiday season and the new year - SmartBrief

All Articles Food How to prep your meat case for the holiday season and the new year


How to prep your meat case for the holiday season and the new year

Consumers’ needs at the meat case are evolving amid the pandemic, and the increased emphasis on home cooking will shape shopping lists during the holidays and into the new year.

4 min read


How to prep your meat case for the holiday season and the new year

Image: Tyson Fresh Meats

This post is sponsored by Tyson Fresh Meats.

It’s time for retailers to start stocking their meat cases for the holidays, and this year calls for traditional favorites as well as a few new cuts to add some variety for consumers who have been cooking at home more amid the pandemic.

In this interview, Kevin Meyer of Tyson Foods discusses how to select and showcase the right products to appeal to a range of shoppers and how case ready products can help retailers deliver what consumers want for the holidays and in the year ahead.


What are the most popular case ready items with shoppers getting ready for the holiday season?    

The big item is a prime rib roast, but it might surprise a lot of people that after that, it’s stew meat and chuck roasts. The comfort foods that are great in cold weather and can be put in a slow cooker while you are out doing your holiday shopping are big movers.

How is the pandemic likely to affect the way consumers shop and cook this holiday season, and how can retailers adjust their marketing/merchandising with this in mind?    

With people traveling less and consumers not eating at restaurants as much, you will see more at-home family gatherings and more at-home meals. Not everyone is comfortable in the kitchen though, and holiday meals can be really intimidating. Anything retailers can do to let consumers know cooking beef or pork is not difficult will be beneficial. Creating a holiday meal destination that has the protein, produce and other staples in one spot in the store helps meal planning and makes shopping easy.  

How is the pandemic likely to affect the way consumers shop and cook in 2021?

As we have seen increased retail demand with more meals prepared at home, consumers have started to look for more variety. They are learning how to cook different meals and experimenting. Now is the time to try new items that you’ve always wanted to try. 

The pandemic has also propelled online grocery shopping. Having a great website that is easy to shop and promotes your high-quality meats not only drives online sales but will also help your in-store sales, too.   

Why should retailers consider stocking case ready products in the year ahead?    

Skilled labor will be an obstacle retailers will continue to face in 2021. Case ready product allows retailers to move the labor they do have from the back of the store to in front of the case to engage with consumers. Case ready solutions are also able to bring items to the case that are very difficult to cut in-store with technology that isn’t realistic to put in every store. As consumers demand more convenience, that innovation is key to growing sales.

What trends do you foresee entering the meat case in 2021?   

Consumers will continue to look for convenience, variety and value in 2021. Case ready products will continue to evolve to fill that need in areas like pre-seasoned, meal kits, new cut methods and packaging.   

How can retailers position meat products differently in light of increased consumer food safety awareness?   

Make sure your cases are clean, organized and operating at the correct temperatures. Clean packaging that is leak-proof and promotes freshness is key. Tyson Fresh Meats case ready product provides a lot of great packaging options that fit that need and have the extra security of being USDA inspected.

Learn more about getting your meat case ready for the year ahead and the Tyson Fresh Meats case ready offering.

Kevin Meyer is the director of customer development for portioned protein innovations at Tyson Foods. He graduated from the University of Nebraska in 1997 with a degree in agricultural economics and a minor in animal science. In 1998, Meyer started with IBP (what is now Tyson Fresh Meats) in sales and over the years has worked with various customers ranging from national retailers, foodservice distributors, restaurant chains and distributors. He has been successful in working with customers to understand their challenges and opportunities and develop solutions that enable the customer to grow their business with current and future consumers in mind. In 2014, he joined the Tyson Foods Case Ready Team to help bring case ready solutions to retailers.