“In our business, we have a balance of business segments that sell the whole bird in the most profitable form. With that said, there are two sides to every coin - the sales revenue side and the cost side. Leadership means effectively balancing both,” said Steve Jurek, president of GNP Company, at USPOULTRY’s 2015 Financial Management Seminar in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL. This year’s seminar brought together financial managers to discuss key economic trends, global markets, tax updates and other financial drivers that affect a company’s bottom line.
In his “Top Management Perspective of Poultry Financial Management” presentation, Jurek discussed strategies that his company utilizes to stay competitive, including tracking key performance indicators, benchmarking and evaluating new business opportunities. He noted that leadership, especially in the poultry financial sector, is crucial. He shared that GNP follows a servant leadership model which encourages discussion, engages team members and builds trusts.
Heather Jones, managing director with BB&T Capital Markets, provided “An Analyst’s Perspective” on the rapidly shifting consumer demand pattern, especially among the Millennial Generation, and how it affects the poultry and egg industry. Jones noted that consumers are more discriminating and demanding than ever before when it comes to better quality foods, and Millennials are becoming the most important consumer demographic for food companies.
“Social media’s vast influence, as well as the Millennial population’s greater distrust for big brands, greater demand for fresh meals and interest in production processes, spell substantial implications for spending patterns. Companies must adapt effectively and eliminate consumer misconceptions by seizing control of messaging, among other strategies,” remarked Jones.
Dr. Terry Barr, an economist for CoBank, provided a ‘pretty optimistic’ economic forecast, citing strong consumer confidence, rising interests and declining unemployment. Barr predicted the U.S. dollar will continue to get stronger, and that, surprisingly, as far as the global economy, more economic growth is coming from the emerging markets. Although, he did note that “overall growth is still very subdued.”