The Opportunity of Private Label Hamburgers for Grocery Retailers


Are you thinking about adding a new private label hamburger (fresh or frozen) to your grocery store? At Miami Beef® we work with national grocery chains to develop successful and flavorful chicken, beef and turkey patties for retailers.

Unlike developing a private label for a product that has an extended shelf life, such as household cleaning products, paper goods (i.e., tissues and napkins) or dried food products such as spices, beverages and similar items, fresh food products require expertise to develop, to penetrate market share.

Competing against national brand leaders for fresh food products requires a strategy.  In this article we’ll share why developing a private label makes sense, and how to successfully innovate a unique product that can become a category sales leader for your business.

Consumer Demand for Private Label Products Is Growing

In spite of the fact that private label brands only make up a small portion of the overall product sells in American grocery stores, the overall demand for them continues to rise.   According to a recent survey conducted by PLMA/Nielsen, only $1 out of every $7 dollars spent by consumers in an grocery store are allocated to private labels.

Did you know that Costco’s Kirkland Signature private label accounts for ¼ of total company sales annually?  The entry of international grocery chains like ALDI have warmed American consumers to the idea that private label products can offer tremendous value and satisfaction.

What is stopping more grocery retailers from expanding into new categories for private label products? It’s not that fresh food private labels are not successful, it is that many grocery stores overestimate the cost and time it takes to develop a private label fresh food product.

The Sales Psychology Behind Private Label Products

The majority of American households are strategic about the amount of money they spend on groceries.  From ‘extreme couponing’ to shopping in more than one location, the hunt for bargains and good food value that offers nutrition at a great price, is part of the never-ending pursuit to stretch the household budget.

There is no shortage of generic brands offered at a discount in any retail grocery store.  The problem? Consumers are also aware that some unbranded products may be imported, and in spite of inspection and legal requirements to assure food safety, there is a great deal of apprehension that shoppers experience when they contemplate a switch from a recognized brand, to a generic label product.

From the consumers perspective, buying a generic product may come with a number of risks.  First, they don’t know the food item, how it tastes, how well it cooks and other questions that they don’t have to answer when they stick to a nationally recognized brand.  It’s about reliability and familiarity, and the relationship that the consumer already has with popular brands.

At the same time, food inflation has continued to rise disproportionately with income levels, and affordability for healthy foods has become a significant concern for American shoppers.  Eyeing the lower priced generic brand is appealing, if it helps to stretch that grocery budget.   But it is a little like rolling the dice; if they buy it and dislike it, they really aren’t ahead for taking that risk and the cost of throwing out something that did not meet their standards.

Private label products like household cleaning supplies, seasonings and baking ingredients are a little easier to weigh and experiment with, in the eyes of the consumer.  There is consistency in certain products (for example, black pepper or table salt) that makes the purchase a lower risk, high value decision for the shopper.  They feel comfortable going with a lower priced product, if they believe that the difference between the generic label product and the national leading brand is negligible.

Customers who shop at your grocery store or chain, do so as an act of trust.  They identify with the grocery store and look favorably on private label brands, when they offer equivalent value for a more economical price point.  It’s about saving money, without compromising on quality whenever the shopper chooses a private label product versus a recognized brand leader in the same category.

What Kind of Private Label Meat Products Should You Offer?

If your grocery chain is considering a foray into expanding your private label products to food items with a limited shelf-life, one of the best places to start is frozen hamburgers and turkey patties.   Not only do frozen patties have an extended product life (when stored correctly) but there are constantly in demand by consumers who want fast and easy to prepare proteins.

For over 100 years, the family behind Miami Beef® has been innovating frozen hamburgers for the food service industry, institutional education and healthcare providers, the travel and tourism sectors, and American military commissary.

Our state-of -the-art processing facility in Miami Florida provides:

  • Organic meat patties
  • Frozen 100% all-beef burgers (economy to grass-fed varieties)
  • Turkey patties (cage-free)
  • Chicken patties
  • Blended burger varieties including pork and veal.
  • Premium American Style Kobe hamburgers
  • Succulent Wagyu beef patties
  • Black Angus burgers
  • Beef and Soy blends
  • Economical blends
  • Low Fat

Using traditional methods past down through three generations of family, Miami Beef® uses fresh ingredients to tailor flavors in our premium recipes.   In our premium collection of burgers, we use no artificial flavors, just real ingredients folded into a hearty and healthy mix that consumers enjoy.

From supplying large national fast-food franchises to grocery store chains nationwide, Miami Beef has the processing capability to provide quality hamburger patties and private label fulfillment.   We produce millions of pounds of hamburgers every year for our wholesale customers.

A Little Bit of Science and Support: The Research and Development Team at Miami Beef®

Our in-house research and development team is where all the magic starts to happen.  Since the success of your private label hamburger or turkey burger relies on being unique to other products offered in your store, our industry experts will help you customize your product, with a variety of creative options.

First, we start with a discussion with your marketing team about your brand identity and culture.  The next step defines the type of private label burger you will sell.  You can customize your burger in four steps:

  1. Identify the size and shape of the patty. Choose from:
  • Round
  • Natural
  • Oval
  • Square
  • Thick
  • Or Hoagie style
  1. Determine your fat to lean meat ratios, to create an economical budget-friendly burger, or a health-conscious fat reduced product (or both). Choose from:
  • 90/10
  • 85/15
  • 80/20
  • 75/25
  • 73/27
  • 70/30
  1. Build your customized flavor profile. Upgrade your burger flavor to one of our premium, all-natural ingredient blends to add value for your customer. Premium blends include:
  • Vidalia Onion
  • Portobello Mushroom
  • Jalapeno
  • Bacon Cheddar
  • Blue Cheese
  • Mushroom Swiss
  • BaKon (pork free alternative)
  • Salisbury
  1. Coordinate branding and labeling with our research and development department, to design a package that will help the product become a sales leader in category, for your grocery store or chain.

Miami Beef® is the resource and processor behind many successful private label beef hamburger and turkey burger brands.  We’re ready to help you create a new revenue stream with savory meat patties that your customers will appreciate and enjoy.

Contact us today to schedule a meeting with our inside sales and research and development team to get started.