CAB partners marketed 882 million lbs. of product for fiscal 2014 ending Sept. 30. Six of the brand's 10 best sales months in its 36-year history were in FY2014. Sales exceeded 70 million lbs. in nine months of the fiscal year. August represented only the second time since the brand's inception in 1978 that monthly sales exceeded 80 million lbs., Certified Angus Beef LLC reported.
“The brand’s value proposition has increased, as has consumer demand, even in the current climate of tighter supply and higher beef prices,” said John Stika, company president. “As consumers evaluate price in relation to value, they favor a premium product like the Certified Angus Beef brand, which consistently delivers a great eating experience for their hard-earned dollars. Our partners, the community that brings it to the table, are leaders of the quality beef movement, and their efforts have fueled this momentum.”
The company reported that Premium steak cuts (middle meats) drove growth, with a 3 million lbs. increase, while sales of end meats climbed nearly 2 percent and ground beef advanced 4 percent on the growing popularity of premium burgers.
CAB's Prime and Natural extensions gained more than 29 percent and nearly 3 percent, respectively.
On a segment basis, Foodservice sales grew more than 9 percent, or 26 million lbs., the company said. Efforts of restaurants promoting branded steaks on menus lifted sales. Fiscal 2014 was also the first time foodservice sales exceeded 300 million lbs.
Retail business continued to represent the largest portion of brand sales at 43 percent, or 380 million lbs., the company reported. End meats accounted for approximately two-thirds of retail sales.
The international demand for premium beef drove sales by the company's international licensed partners more than 9 percent to 120 million lbs., a new record, according to CAB LLC. The Middle East represented the biggest growth markets.
The value-added segment posted sales of more than 22 million lbs., the second-best year in the brand’s history. Sales climbed on consumer interest in high-quality convenience products, according to the company. Pre-cooked pot roast, corned beef and marinated fajita meat were among the products leading sales.