Materialising Taste: Silver Fern Farms, Eating Quality and Assembling Difference in New Zealand’s Red Meat Industry (14157)
In late 2013 the New Zealand based meat processor, Silver Fern Farms (SFF) announced the rollout of an Eating Quality (EQ) programme. Designed to align the varied taste expectations of meat consumers with farming and processing practices the EQ programme represents an ambitious effort to render the taste of meat knowable and calculable in the pursuit of greater economic value. Framed by the question, 'how is taste made material?' we draw on developing research on materialities in assemblage theory and standardising work to follow the materialisation of taste. Beginning with SFF’s emergent EQ programme we trace the production and use of taste in relation to red meat across a complex web of places and relationships that span the contemporary and historical agri-food.