C. Larry Pope, CEO for Smithfield Foods, announced on Thursday that the company is becoming a packaged-foods company, relying less on hogs and fresh pork products. "We are on the cusp of changing who this company is," Pope said at the Barclays Capital Back-to-School Consumer Conference. "We are emerging as a global leader in the packaged-meats business."

While the company will continue to produce hogs and fresh pork, Reuters reports, packaged meats will play a larger role, including products under the Armour, Eckrich and Farmland brands. Pope called the company's hog unit its “Achilles' heel,” but he added that Smithfield will not exit the hog production business. "We are looking more like a consumer packaged goods company than we are an agribusiness player," he said.

After Pope's announcement, Smithfield's shares rose 67 cents, or 5.1 percent, to $13.80, according to AP reports.

Source: Reuters, Associated Press

USDA Secretary criticizes media for continued use of “swine flu” term

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack accused the media of harming the pork industry by referring to the H1N1 virus as the swine flu. “This is not swine flu. Every time that is said consumers get confused,” Vilsack said on a conference call with news reporters, according to theDes Moines Register.

The Centers for Disease Control, Vilsack said, called the virus swine flu because many of the virus genes were similar to those found in pigs. Further study has found that the virus is actually quite different from viruses typically found in North American hogs.

He added that the USDA is trying to speed the release of a vaccine by developing two seed viruses, which it has provided to five vaccine companies.

Source: Des Moines Register

Queen City Sausage unveils Web store

Queen City Sausage customers now can order all of the company’s products online for the first time in its 44-year history following today’s debut of its updated web site,www.QueenCitySausage.com

By logging onto www.QueenCitySausage.com, customers can view the company’s complete lineup of  sausages, lunch meat and hams, complete order and shipping forms and find locations where Queen City Sausage products are sold throughout Greater Cincinnati. The web site, designed by Cincinnati-based CG Marketing Communications, also provides cooking suggestions for Queen City Sausage products. 

“We have always prided ourselves on outstanding customer service, so allowing our loyal customers to place orders on our new web site is simply the next logical step in Queen City Sausage’s customer-first philosophy,” said Elmer Hensler, who founded Queen City Sausage in 1965 and still serves as its president. “We built our business by taking no shortcuts and by using only lean cuts of pork and beef. We don’t use poultry or other fillers like some national brands and we never will.”

Queen City Sausage is located in the heart of Cincinnati’s historic Camp Washington, an area once known as “Porkopolis” because it was home to dozens of meat-packing and sausage-making businesses. Hensler was born in the West End in 1930 and began working in Porkopolis meat-packing operations when he was 12. At 79, Hensler still comes to work every day at the Camp Washington plant to ensure that Queen City Sausage continues the Porkopolis tradition of producing the world’s finest sausages, lunch meat and hams.

Queen City Sausage is the only locally owned and operated sausage-making company still operating in the City of Cincinnati. Queen City Sausage still uses its original German-descent recipes and continues to hand-mix all of its spices.

Source: Queen City Sausage