Should you market Chevron, Cabrito or goat meat?

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Title:
Should you market Chevron, Cabrito or goat meat?
Physical Description:
Book
Creator:
Degner, Robert L.
Publisher:
Florida Agricultural Market Research Center
Place of Publication:
Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date:
Copyright Date:
1991

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University of Florida Institutional Repository
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University of Florida
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All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida
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AA00000306:00001


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Should You Market Chevon, Cabrito or Goat Meat?


Dr. Robert L. Degnera


For those of us that have eaten goat meat all of our lives, it probably does not matter what it
is called. When I was a young child, we had barbecued "goat" at our annual 4th of July family
reunion. Later, as a resident of South Texas and frequent visitor to Mexico, I ate Cabrito. Now, at
goat producers' meetings and conferences, we dine on chevon roast and other delicacies. Are we just
getting "uppity?" Are we in danger of confusing consumers and spoiling the market for good old
goat meat? This is the question addressed in this paper. The objective is to share evidence gathered
in several marketing studies on the importance of product names so that the goat industry's
marketing efforts can be enhanced.


The Importance of Names


When is the last time you saw an old western or war movie starring Marion Michael
Morrison? Well, Marion was better known as The Duke, John Wayne. Do you remember the old "I
Love Lucy" show starring Dianne Belmont and Desi Amaz? How about "Little House on the
Prairie," starring Michael Orowitz? How about the old-time western hero Leonard Slye, his
sweetheart Frances Octavia Smith and his horse Trigger? Perhaps you know them as Roy Rogers,
Dale Evans and Trigger. Nathan Bimbaum is nearly 100 years old and he is still chasing young
women and smoking cigars. Have you seen him on TV lately? He goes by the name George Bums.

Marketers in the entertainment industry were among the first to realize that names are
important in creating images that sell. Automakers now spend vast sums of money on research to
evaluate car names, hoping to avoid another flop like the Edsel. Campbell Soup Company market
tested a new spaghetti sauce called "Campbell's Very Own Special Sauce." It failed because
consumers thought the sauce was soupy or watery. Campbells reintroduced the same product as
"Prego" and it became very successful. A few years ago, the Florida Agricultural Market Research
Center (FAMRC) at the University of Florida studied consumers' perceptions of the grape names
"scuppenongs" and muscadiness." Among consumers unfamiliar with muscadine grapes, both
names conveyed very poor, negative images. If names create such negative images in consumers'
minds, it makes it very difficult to get them to try unfamiliar products.






a Dr. Degner is Professor and Director, Florida Agricultural Market Research Center, Food and Resource Economics Department, Institute
of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida. This paper was presented at the Regional Small Farm conference and
Trade Show, sponsored by Florida A & M University, Tallahassee, Florida, November 7, 1991.

Several years ago, the FAMRC conducted several studies which evaluated the general









public's perceptions of goats and goat meat. One study used consumer focus groups to analyze
prevailing attitudes toward goat meat. A second large-scale consumer study compared organoleptic
qualities of barbecued goat and beef and also analyzed respondents' images of goats and goat meat.
A third study explored images of goat meat held by restaurant managers. All of these studies have
important implications for producers and marketers of goat meat.


Consumer Focus Groups


Two focus group interviews were conducted, one in Jacksonville and one in Tampa.
Attitudes of participants towards goat and goat meat varied widely within both groups. Some
expressed shock that people ate goat meat, comparing goats to horses and pets like dogs and cats.
Several participants associated goats with nursery rhymes, cartoon characters, and petting zoos.

In both focus groups, participants suggested changing the name goat to something that
would connote a meat product rather than the animal itself. People in each group cited "veal" as an
example of a product that has wide appeal but one they thought would suffer reduced demand if it
were labeled "baby calf." Another example cited was "pig meat" and pork. Today, even "pork" has
taken on negative connotations, and the pork industry is attempting to reposition it as the "other
white meat," hoping to ride on the coattails of the poultry industry's phenomenal success. Other
focus group participants said they would not eat goat meat because goats ate junk and trash.
Negative comments were also made by older ex-servicemen that claimed to have been served
horrible tasting goat meat (probably mutton) by the army during World War II. Still other negative
statements were made about goats and goat meat "stinking."

On the positive side, many participants expressed positive attitudes toward goat meat. Goats'
milk was generally reviewed as being nutritious and healthful, and this association carried over to
the meat. Goat meat was also thought to be lean, high in protein and low in cholesterol.
Interestingly, when asked what type of restaurant would be likely to serve goat meat, trendy, upscale
places with relatively affluent young patrons frequently surfaced.

In summary, the focus groups identified extremely mixed consumer reactions to goat meat.
These results were then used in designing a questionnaire that was administered during a large-scale
consumer survey.


1 arge Scale Consumer Survey












Six-hundred consumers, split equally between Jacksonville and Tampa, Florida, were asked
to evaluate unidentified samples of goat meat and beef. They were asked to rate a number of
product characteristics. For some product attributes, goat meat was preferred over the beef, and for
others, beef was preferred. However, examination of "overall appeal" ratings showed that 42
percent of the respondents preferred the goat sample, 38 percent preferred the beef, and 20 percent
were indifferent between the two. While the overall appeal ratings were not statistically different for
the two products, the test demonstrated that goat meat, properly prepared, compares favorably with
beef.

Immediately after the blind taste test, consumers were asked several questions designed to
explore images they associated with goat meat. They were asked to describe the social status of "a
person who eats goat." Only 12 percent said goat eaters would be likely to be from high or upper
middle classes. However, over half said they would be from low or lower-middle classes. This
perception was even more pronounced among those that had never eaten goat meat before: nearly
60 percent felt that consumers of goat meat were likely to be from low or lower middle classes
(Table 1).


Table 1.--Consumers' Associations of "Goat" with Social Class
Ate Goat Before
Class Total Sample Yes No
(----------------------percent----- ---------)
High 2.0 3.4 1.6
Upper Middle 10.4 8.9 11.2
Middle 36.3 51.4 30.7
Lower Middle 27.8 21.2 29.5
Low 235. 1i1 270
Total 100.0 100.0 100.0


Next, the 600 respondents were asked to associate consumers of "chevon and cabrito" with
social class. Nearly one-fourth thought "cabrito" would be eaten by the high and upper-middle
classes, but nearly half thought "chevon" would be eaten by these groups (Table 2). These results
show strong negative associations for goat meat, a somewhat positive reaction to cabrito, and a very
positive response to chevon.











Table 2.--Consumers' Association of Selected Goat Product Names With Social Class
Class Chevon Cabrito Goat
(----------------------------percent---------------------- -)
High 13.7 7.0 2.0
Upper Middle 33.6 17.0 10.4
Middle 40.7 55.3 36.3
Lower Middle 7.8 15.6 27.8
Low 42 51 235
Total 100.0 100.0 100.0



All 600 respondents were also asked for associations which would describe restaurants
selling goat meat. For the most part, associations were positive, with the majority of all respondents
describing restaurants selling goat meat as clean, well maintained, in a nice part of town and having
tasteful decor. However significantly fewer of the respondents that had never eaten goat meat had
positive descriptions of restaurants selling goat meat. For example, 87 percent of those having eaten
goat described such restaurants as "clean," compared with only 75 percent of those that had not
eaten goat (Table 3).


Table 3.--Consumers perceptions of restaurants selling goat meat
Ate Goat Before
Description Total Sample Yes No
(-----------------------percent-------- ------------ -)
Clean 78.1 87.3 74.9
Well-maintained 72.3 82.7 68.7
Nice Part of Town 69.5 79.3 65.8
Tasteful Decor 64.8 73.3 61.2


Restaurant Manager Survey


In a statewide survey of restaurants designed to explore the market potential for goat meat,
managers were asked which of three names (goat meat, chevon and cabrito) would have the greatest
appeal to their customers. Less than one-fifth selected "goat meat." The remaining managers were









nearly equally divided between chevon and cabrito (Table 4).
preferred by a 2:1 majority of restaurant managers.


Both chevon and cabrito were


Table 4.--Restaurant managers' preferred names for goat meat.
Name Number Percent

Goat meat 19 18.3
Chevon 42 40.3
Cabrito 43. 414
Total 104 100.0


CONCLUSIONS


We as agriculturists can learn much about marketing from the entertainment industry and
packaged goods marketers. Names conjure up images, both good and bad. Good images help sell
products, and bad images make it difficult to promote and sell products. In our society, goat is not
widely consumed; in our sample of 600 mall patrons, only 25 percent had ever eaten goat.
Unfortunately, goats are frequently perceived as being smelly and obstinate, with voracious appetites
for trash. There are many of these negative images associated with the name "goat," and these
negative perceptions can undoubtedly reduce consumers' willingness to try and buy the product.

In conclusion, should you market chevon, cabrito, or goat meat? If you are satisfied to limit
your market to people familiar with goat, "goat meat" is fine. However, if you want to build a larger
market by appealing to the masses that have never tried this delicacy, your chances of success will
be increased by calling it chevon, cabrito, or some other exotic sounding name. Remember, outside
of the brotherhood of current goat meat consumers, goat is a four-letter word!




Full Text

PAGE 1

Should You Market Chevon, Cabrito or Goat Meat? Dr. Robert L. Degnera For those of us that have eaten goat meat all of our lives, it probably does not matter what it is called. When I was a young child, we had barbecu ed "goat" at our annual 4th of July family reunion. Later, as a resident of South Texas and frequent visitor to Mexico, I ate Cabrito. Now, at goat producers' meetings and conferences, we dine on chevon roast and other delicacies. Are we just getting "uppity?" Are we in danger of confusi ng consumers and spoiling the market for good old goat meat? This is the question addressed in this paper. The objective is to share evidence gathered in several marketing studies on the importance of product names so that the goat industry's marketing efforts can be enhanced. The Importance of Names When is the last time you saw an old we stern or war movie starring Marion Michael Morrison? Well, Marion was better known as The Duke, John Wayne. Do you remember the old "I Love Lucy" show starring Dianne Belmont and Desi Arnaz? How about "Little House on the Prairie," starring Michael Orowitz ? How about the old-time western hero Leonard Slye, his sweetheart Frances Octavia Smith and his horse Tr igger? Perhaps you know them as Roy Rogers, Dale Evans and Trigger. Nathan Birnbaum is nearly 100 years old and he is still chasing young women and smoking cigars. Have you seen him on TV lately? He goes by the name George Burns. Marketers in the entertainment industry were among the first to realize that names are important in creating images that sell. Automakers now spend vast sums of money on research to evaluate car names, hoping to avoid another flop like the Edsel. Campbell Soup Company market tested a new spaghetti sauce called "Campbell's Ve ry Own Special Sauce." It failed because consumers thought the sauce was soupy or watery. Campbells reintroduced the same product as "Prego" and it became very successful. A few year s ago, the Florida Agricultural Market Research Center (FAMRC) at the University of Florida st udied consumers' perceptions of the grape names "scuppenongs" and "muscadines." Among consumers unfamiliar with muscadine grapes, both names conveyed very poor, negative images. If na mes create such negative images in consumers' minds, it makes it very difficult to get them to try unfamiliar products. a Dr. Degner is Professor and Director, Florida Agricultural Ma rket Research Center, Food and Resource Economics Department, In stitute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesv ille, Florida. This paper was presented at the Regional Small Farm conference and Trade Show, sponsored by Florida A & M University, Tallahassee, Florida, November 7, 1991. Several years ago, the FAMRC conducted several studies which evaluated the general

PAGE 2

2 public's perceptions of goats and goat meat. On e study used consumer focus groups to analyze prevailing attitudes toward goat meat. A second la rge-scale consumer study compared organoleptic qualities of barbecued goat and beef and also analyzed respondents' images of goats and goat meat. A third study explored images of goat meat held by restaurant managers. All of these studies have important implications for producers and marketers of goat meat. Consumer Focus Groups Two focus group interviews were conducted, one in Jacksonville and one in Tampa. Attitudes of participants towards goat and goat meat varied widely within both groups. Some expressed shock that people ate goat meat, compari ng goats to horses and pets like dogs and cats. Several participants associated goats with nursery rhymes, cartoon characters, and petting zoos. In both focus groups, participants suggested changing the name goat to something that would connote a meat product rather than the animal itself. People in each group cited "veal" as an example of a product that has wide appeal but one they thought would suffer reduced demand if it were labeled "baby calf." Another example cited was "pig meat" and pork. Today, even "pork" has taken on negative connotations, and the pork industr y is attempting to reposition it as the "other white meat," hoping to ride on the coattails of the poultry industry's phenomenal success. Other focus group participants said they would not eat goat meat because goats ate junk and trash. Negative comments were also made by older ex-ser vicemen that claimed to have been served horrible tasting goat meat (probably mutton) by th e army during World War II. Still other negative statements were made about goats and goat meat "stinking." On the positive side, many participants expre ssed positive attitudes toward goat meat. Goats' milk was generally reviewed as being nutritious a nd healthful, and this association carried over to the meat. Goat meat was also thought to be l ean, high in protein and low in cholesterol. Interestingly, when asked what type of restaurant would be likely to serve goat meat, trendy, upscale places with relatively affluent young patrons frequently surfaced. In summary, the focus groups identified extrem ely mixed consumer reactions to goat meat. These results were then used in designing a questi onnaire that was administered during a large-scale consumer survey. Large Scale Consumer Survey

PAGE 3

3 Six-hundred consumers, split equally between J acksonville and Tampa, Florida, were asked to evaluate unidentified samples of goat meat a nd beef. They were asked to rate a number of product characteristics. For some product attributes goat meat was preferred over the beef, and for others, beef was preferred. However, examina tion of "overall appeal" ratings showed that 42 percent of the respondents preferred the goat samp le, 38 percent preferred the beef, and 20 percent were indifferent between the two. While the overall a ppeal ratings were not statistically different for the two products, the test demonstrated that goat meat, properly prepared, compares favorably with beef. Immediately after the blind taste test, consum ers were asked several questions designed to explore images they associated with goat meat. They were asked to describe the social status of "a person who eats goat." Only 12 percent said goat eaters would be likely to be from high or upper middle classes. However, over half said they w ould be from low or lower-middle classes. This perception was even more pronounced among those that had never eaten goat meat before: nearly 60 percent felt that consumers of goat meat were likely to be from low or lower middle classes (Table 1). Table 1.--Consumers' Associations of "Goat" with Social Class Ate Goat Before Class Total Sample Yes No (---------------------------percent---------------------------) High 2.0 3.4 1.6 Upper Middle 10.4 8.9 11.2 Middle 36.3 51.4 30.7 Lower Middle 27.8 21.2 29.5 Low 23.5 15.1 27.0 Total 100.0 100.0 100.0 Next, the 600 respondents were asked to associate consumers of "chevon and cabrito" with social class. Nearly one-fourth thought "cab rito" would be eaten by the high and upper-middle classes, but nearly half thought "chevon" would be eaten by these groups (Table 2). These results show strong negative associations for goat meat, a somewhat positive reaction to cabrito, and a very positive response to chevon.

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4 Table 2.--Consumers' Association of Select ed Goat Product Names With Social Class Class Chevon Cabrito Goat (-------------------------------percent-------------------------------) High 13.7 7.0 2.0 Upper Middle 33.6 17.0 10.4 Middle 40.7 55.3 36.3 Lower Middle 7.8 15.6 27.8 Low 4.2 5.1 23.5 Total 100.0 100.0 100.0 All 600 respondents were also asked for asso ciations which would describe restaurants selling goat meat. For the most part, associations were positive, with the majority of all respondents describing restaurants selling goat meat as clean, we ll maintained, in a nice part of town and having tasteful decor. However significantly fewer of the respondents that had never eaten goat meat had positive descriptions of restaurants selling goat meat For example, 87 percent of those having eaten goat described such restaurants as "clean," comp ared with only 75 percent of those that had not eaten goat (Table 3). Table 3.--Consumers perceptions of restaurants selling goat meat Ate Goat Before Description Total Sample Yes No (--------------------------percent-------------------------------) Clean 78.1 87.3 74.9 Well-maintained 72.3 82.7 68.7 Nice Part of Town 69.5 79.3 65.8 Tasteful Decor 64.8 73.3 61.2 Restaurant Manager Survey In a statewide survey of restaurants designe d to explore the market potential for goat meat, managers were asked which of three names (goat meat, chevon and cabrito) would have the greatest appeal to their customers. Less than one-fifth sele cted "goat meat." The remaining managers were

PAGE 5

5 nearly equally divided between chevon and cabrito (Table 4). Both chevon and cabrito were preferred by a 2:1 majority of restaurant managers. Table 4.--Restaurant managers' preferred names for goat meat. Name Number Percent Goat meat 19 18.3 Chevon 42 40.3 Cabrito 43 41.4 Total 104 100.0 CONCLUSIONS We as agriculturists can learn much about marketing from the entertainment industry and packaged goods marketers. Names conjure up im ages, both good and bad. Good images help sell products, and bad images make it difficult to promot e and sell products. In our society, goat is not widely consumed; in our sample of 600 mall patrons, only 25 percent had ever eaten goat. Unfortunately, goats are frequently perceived as being smelly and obstinate, with voracious appetites for trash. There are many of these negative images associated with the name "goat," and these negative perceptions can undoubtedly reduce consumers' willingness to try and buy the product. In conclusion, should you market chevon, cabrito, or goat meat? If you are satisfied to limit your market to people familiar with goat, "goat meat" is fine. However, if you want to build a larger market by appealing to the masses that have neve r tried this delicacy, your chances of success will be increased by calling it chevon, cabrito, or some other exotic sounding name. Remember, outside of the brotherhood of current goat meat consumers, goat is a four-letter word!