Meat + Poultry - July 2010 - 60

Small Business Matters

Off the beaten path
The Nahunta Pork Center goes whole hog
BY STEVE KRUT
meatpoultry@sosland.com

ocated in Eastern North Carolina, the second-largest hog-producing state in the country, is an intersection several miles from several
small towns, the closest of which is
Pikeville, population 719. There, on
all four corners of an intersection
sprawls the Nahunta Pork Center,

L

"He's (Dad) still the owner-operator and comes in every day for 12 to
14 hours," Larry continues. "He does

Nahunta is what Walt
Disney would have done
if he knew anything
about pork.
an ever-expanding dream of Mack
Pierce, a 78-year-old hog buyer who,
in the mid-1950's, operated a custom
slaughter and processing plant.
"Dad believed there was a need for a
retail pork store and in 1975 converted
an old tobacco barn across the street
into what has become America's largest
retail pork display," explains his son,
Larry Pierce, Nahunta's vice president
and general manager. The first week
three hogs were processed for sale and
everything sold out in just a few hours.

Mack Pierce
everything except kill-floor work now,
and when someone asks for him, I'll
tell them to just stand still and he'll
come flying by you in a few minutes."

60 * Meat&Poultry * July 2010 * www.MeatPoultry.com

'Pork is king'
Commuters traveling along U.S.
Hwy. 70 get a dashboard education
about the Nahunta Pork Center. Billboards are everywhere touting the
place where "Pork is King." Larry
estimates the fi rm spends more than
$150,000 a year on a dozen billboards, and advertising on five radio
stations and in five newspapers that
serve a 150-mile radius. In addition
to the regular advertising budget,
Nahunta has its own Web site, www.
nahuntapork.com. Their advertising
and promotional efforts help bring
people in to the pork center, he says,
but the real sales job has always been
the one turned in by his father.
"Dad had a driving personality
that brought people to his retail shop
when others thought his idea wouldn't
work," Larry recalls. "And despite the
advertising we do, it's that personality
and word of mouth that brings people
here and keeps them coming back."
Nahunta's customers - thirtyfive percent of whom are from out of


http://www.nahuntapork.com http://www.MeatPoultry.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Meat + Poultry - July 2010

Contents
Meat + Poultry - July 2010 - 1
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