To understand the satisfaction of Canadian beef consumers, a Retail Beef Satisfaction Benchmark was completed as part of the 2014-18 National Beef Quality Audit.
Goals of the retail beef study were to determine:
- the importance of tenderness, juiciness and flavour
- consumer satisfaction levels with Canadian beef steaks
- the tenderness of Canadian beef steaks
Consumer satisfaction with retail beef in Canada was assessed using four cuts of steak (boneless cross rib, top sirloin, inside round, or strip loin) from 75 stores across Canada. A total of 1200 randomly selected consumers were provided with one cut of steak, instructed to prepare it at home and to provide a score out of ten for juiciness, flavour, tenderness and overall rating. Consumers were screened to ensure they had some experience in preparing beef products and had consumed beef in the past year. The same retailers also provided 680 steaks which were tested for tenderness using a technique called the Warner-Bratzler method at Agriculture and Agri-Food (AAFC) laboratory in Lacombe, AB.
The consumer satisfaction assessment revealed that 79% of the test consumers gave an overall score of 7/10 or higher. Of the 1,200 consumers, 288 gave their steak a perfect rating (10/10). When the rest of the consumers were asked, “Why wasn’t it perfect?”, approximately 12% of study consumers felt their cooking methods were solely or partially responsible. The consumers’ main concern (46%) was with the texture (tenderness and juiciness) of their steak. Flavour and fat content were least often noted as a concern (9% and 6% respectively).
As found in past studies, consumer satisfaction continues to be driven by tenderness. The AAFC laboratory results indicated that steak tenderness had improved slightly from previous testing in 2009.
Compared to the previous survey, the price per steak increased by 39%, due to the higher price of beef per kilogram. Consumers have high expectations of quality and those expectations increase when prices increase.
Watch the video
- Beef Quality Audits overview
- Download National Beef Quality Audit – 2016/17 Plant Carcass Audit (PDF)
- Download National Beef Quality Audit – Benchmarking Progress (PDF)
- Download National Beef Quality Audit – 2014-18 Retail Beef Satisfaction (PDF)
- Watch full video series
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