Casual dining chain Smokey Bones Bar & Fire Grill, is looking for new ways to go beyond pulled pork and ribs. Although pork is already a mainstay for the chain, they are seeking even more ways to feature pork.

“While quality barbecue is the foundation of our brand, we want to extend our menu so people view us as more than a barbecue destination,” says John McLaughlin, vice president, for the chain. “The National Pork Board is doing a great job of helping us brainstorm new avenues for offering pork.” 

With 73 restaurants in 17 states east of the Mississippi River, a majority of Smokey Bones’ outlets are located in Florida. The company’s focus on new product development is centered on attracting more female consumers, as well as health-conscious consumers.

“Barbecue is sometimes perceived as a special treat and a caloric indulgence,” McLaughlin says. “As we show that saucy and smoky aren’t the only ways to eat pork, we are hoping that the pork checkoff can help us bridge the gap to potentially offer and promote lean cuts of pork in the future.”

From Smokey Bones’ use of the pork logo on its new menus to its pork promotions, the chain is helping introduce more consumers to the possibilities with pork, says Paul Perfilio, national foodservice marketing manager for the NPB. “These operators use pork’s great taste and versatility to keep guests coming back more often.”

Source: NPB