Egg Recall Scares Some, Brings Opportunities to Others


The Story

Millions of eggs have been recalled since a salmonella outbreak sickened over 1,000 people.  The egg industry is on the defensive, but some local farmers have seen increased interest in their eggs.  Both groups can use communication to their advantage.

Egg recall

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Discussion Starters

  • What is the best approach for the industry to repair its image and rebuild consumer trust?
  • What are the communication objectives of the egg industry during the recall?
  • How should egg producers communicate their messages? What communication medium would be best in this situation?
  • How can independent farmers capitalize on the situation to promote locally produced eggs? What could be some of their key messages?

Asssignment Ideas

  • In small groups, discuss a press release about one of the recalls.  What principles of persuasion and communicating bad news are used in the announcement?
  • Imagine that you're the owner of Morning Fresh Farms, a local egg producer in Colorado.  Write a letter to consumers promoting your eggs.  Use the opportunity of current egg recalls to educate the public about your products.  Assume that this letter will be published as a full-page ad in the local newspaper. Read this article for background information.
  • In small groups, review the website What are the group's most convincing and least convincing arguments?  Why do these arguments work well or fail to work?