I’ve heard it said quite a few times recently that American consumers may not necessarily trust big agribusiness companies, but they do trust farmers.
In conjunction with National Farmers’ Day on October 12, Perdue Farms released a series of six videos on its website, which give consumers a closer look at a group of Perdue contract farm families that all live in the Delmarva region, and their operations.
After watching those videos, it seems realistic to think that if more people would also see those videos, the trust of farmers would continue, and trust for companies such as Perdue, the fourth largest broiler company in the United States, would be increased.
“We want to connect our consumers to see where their food comes from, and Perdue chicken comes from farms,” Eric Christianson, senior vice president of marketing and innovation for Perdue Foods, said in a press release. “These videos let consumers meet the farm families, how they raise our chickens, understand what we’re doing differently and see inside the chicken houses.
‘Meeting’ the farmers and their families
The videos show footage from five contract farms, as well as commentary from those families that operate them.
Among them are:
- Sarah Kirk, who bought a 640-acre farms with a chicken house near her grandparents’ poultry farm once she graduated from school.
- Jesse Vanderwende, who started following in his parents’ footsteps as Perdue growers even sooner. He rented two chicken houses from a neighbor when he was a senior high school.
- Ryan Greer, who built broiler houses on his family’s farm and now raises organic chickens for the Perdue Harvestland label
- Matt Webber, whose shares the joys of farming with his family. He even recalled a time a delivery of baby chicks was made to his farm one day after his daughter was born
- Choundry Asif, a former New York limousine driver and first-generation farmer, who wanted a profession that allowed him to spend more time with his family and allowed him to do something that he loved
About the videos
The selection of these farmers that were featured was done well. All seem happy and likeable. All have a youthful enthusiasm for being innovative in their operations in accordance with Perdue’s standards and not simply farming the same way, when applicable, they saw earlier generations farm.
The barns are clean, the chickens look healthy and happy. The buildings are well-maintained. The feed crops look healthy. All of which demonstrate how a person could have confidence in buying a package of Perdue chicken at the grocery store.
The farmers discuss why they think using antibiotic alternatives such as oregano is good for the birds and has helped them become better farmers.
They talk about allowing the sunlight in and allowing birds to have outdoor access, and how they believe that has been good for the chickens.
They talk about if there is a problem, they could have to get out of bed at 3 a.m., but do so gladly because “those chickens come first.”
They converse about the feed given to the chickens, with one saying, “I would eat it if I was a chicken.”
Farmers talk about the increased room and enhancements given to the organic chickens, such as perches. Those enhancements are used, they say.
But perhaps most importantly for the company’s image, they talk about how Perdue chickens are raised on family farms who are trying to do the right thing, and that the phrase “factory farm” simply doesn’t apply to Perdue.