On March 22, U.S. chilled pork was offered to supermarket customers for the first time in China. The product made its debut at an outlet of the Lian Hua supermarket chain in Zhengzhou, a city of 7.5 million in Henan Province. The trial shipments were shipped by sea container to China where they cleared customs and quarantine at port, before being trucked more than 600 miles to Zhengzhou.
WH Group, which imported the product from Smithfield (its U.S. subsidiary), plans to use customer feedback from the Lian Hua outlet to build additional sales points nationwide. The product is being sold in pre-cut form as “Smithfield Premium Chilled Pork.” The rollout featured in-store sampling of a range of U.S. pork items, conducted by trained WH Group staff.