WOOSTER, Ohio--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Propelled by growing consumer demand for high-quality beef and family farmers focused on that target, Certified Angus Beef LLC reported record sales of 1.121 billion pounds in Fiscal 2017 (ending Sept. 30).
That’s the 11th consecutive annual sales record, continuing a 13-year streak of year-over-year growth. It is also the second time sales topped 1 billion pounds and marked an increase of 10.4%, or 106 million pounds, over last year.
“Our partners, from the farm to the plate, all fit together in the effort to fulfill demand for high-quality beef,” said brand president John Stika. “Sales growth was fueled by the dramatic, positive shift we continue to see in the supply of high-quality cattle.”
Quality at the farm
Since the Certified Angus Beef ® brand’s start in 1978 as the brainchild of Angus cattlemen who wanted to give consumers consistent beef quality, family farmers have been its foundation. Raising cattle that target the brand’s 10 exacting product quality standards enables processors, distributors, restaurateurs and retailers to meet ever-growing consumer demand.
Responding to strong economic signals over several years, ranchers have grown the size and improved the quality of their herds through the best genetics and management practices. This collective improvement translated into 4.53 million cattle certified for the brand – 15.6% over Fiscal 2016. The rate of cattle eligible for the brand rose to a record 29.7%, up from just 16% a decade ago.
Business divisions set records
Sales growth from a global network of more than 19,000 licensed partners reflected consumers’ preference for the brand, and recognition of its quality on menus and in meat cases.
- Sales exploded in 49 countries outside the United States, reaching a record 174.5 million pounds – a 26.4% increase. Growth came from a mix of new business in China, the Dominican Republic and Peru, as well as strong gains in Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Mexico and Canada.
- Retail sales grew nearly 5%, reaching a record 456 million pounds. The top 50 licensed retailers averaged 6.6% growth and two-thirds increased same-store sales.
- The Foodservice Division netted sales of 385 million pounds – an 8.5% increase. Licensed distributors increased sales by more than 9%, and sales to licensed restaurants were up over 12%.
- Sales of value-added products that bring convenience meals to both retail and foodservice customers rose more than 5% to 27.0 million pounds. Key items included marinated thin meats, fully cooked burgers and fresh corned beef.
Growth across product categories
Consumers crave steaks for special occasions, and this demand backed an 8.4% increase in sales of middle meats (premium steaks). Sales of roasts and other end meats rose by 13.5%, and ground beef sales were up 1.7 million pounds. The most discerning customers pushed sales of the brand’s Prime product extension up more than 35%.
This balanced growth resulted in 12 monthly sales records, and included seven out of the 10 best sales months in the brand’s 39-year history.
About the Certified Angus Beef ® brand
World renowned for its exceptional quality and generous marbling, the Certified Angus Beef ® brand is the original brand of premium beef, created in 1978 and still owned today by family ranchers. With only the best Angus beef making the cut, 10 exacting standards ensure superior taste and tenderness in every bite. For more information, visit CertifiedAngusBeef.com, or follow the brand on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn.