Meat Promos Strong Despite Rising Costs

Several Southeastern retailers kicked off the summer grilling season this Memorial Day with strong price promotions on meats and other cookout favorites, despite rising costs led by the recent doubling in the price of corn used in animal feed. Ingles Markets in Asheville, N.C., ran one of the region's most aggressive promos on ground beef throughout its network of almost 200 stores, offering fresh

Several Southeastern retailers kicked off the summer grilling season this Memorial Day with strong price promotions on meats and other cookout favorites, despite rising costs led by the recent doubling in the price of corn used in animal feed.

Ingles Markets in Asheville, N.C., ran one of the region's most aggressive promos on ground beef throughout its network of almost 200 stores, offering fresh lean ground chuck for $1.68 per pound for shoppers that bought packages of 5 pounds or larger. Chicken was also on sale at Ingles — for $1.98 per pound for boneless, skinless breasts, while baby back ribs were specially priced at $3.49 per pound.

Similarly, Ukrop's Super Markets, Richmond, Va., through Saturday was offering ground beef value packs at $1.98 per pound, split chicken breast value packs at 98 cents per pound and $2 off the chain's fresh prepared salads, including macaroni salad, potato salad and cole slaw.

In an effort to build a loyal base of grilling enthusiasts this summer, Salisbury, N.C.-based Food Lion has built a summer cookout promotion around its premium private-label “Butcher's Brand” beef. The promotion will give away $15 to $20 gift certificates in July to shoppers who save Butcher's Brand Beef Giveaway Cards available in store fliers between May 16 and July 3, among other conditions. Food Lion MVP loyalty club members were also treated to discounts on meat and poultry this holiday weekend, including a buy-one, get-one-free offer on 2.5-pound bags of boneless, skinless chicken breasts, and Butcher's Brand ground beef at $4.78 per 2-pound pack.

Even regional natural food retailer EarthFare, Asheville, N.C., was getting into the grilling spirit this weekend, offering hormone- and antibiotic-free Montana Ranch rib-eye steaks for $9.99 per pound — $3 per pound off the regular price.

A recent flier announced that the 11-store chain was planning grilling events all summer long, including sampling events, cookouts and grill-outs for local non-profits.