NZ: TV show increases free-range pork demand

10-06-2009 | |

The demand for free range-pork in New Zealand is booming. Free-range pork producer, Freedom Farms has received a huge number of calls and demand had nearly doubled since a TVNZ programme aired last month featuring pig treatment.

Some of the new demand could drop away as memory of the programme recedes but it would settle at a much higher level, said Gregor Fyfe, co-founder of Freedom Farms.

Freedom Farms, which started a little over three years ago, has licensed its manufacturing and sourced its pork from seven South Island farms which did not use sow stalls, farrowing crates or concrete pens and were certified by the SPCA.

“We just knew there’s a lot of consumers who aren’t driven entirely by that [price] but they’re actually driven by wanting a better-quality eating experience or a more natural or more healthy product,” Fyfe said.

Jonathan Walker, a farmer specialising in free-range pork from old, rare pig breeds, cannot keep up with a demand which has seen sales nearly double in the past three to four weeks.

“It’s true that my product is a more expensive product, but if that is your major concern then I would argue that at the end of the day you need less of it,” Walker said. “It’s all about taste.”