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Pilgrim's to Temerlin

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Temerlin McClain has been awarded the retail advertising business of Pilgrim's Pride.

The account, which has been inactive for more than two years, shifted from The Richards Group here without a formal review, according to client vice president of marketing Dan Emery. He said a mutual acquaintance in-troduced him to the Irving, Texas, agency, and that he was impressed by the shop's creative team.

Interpublic Group's Temerlin will handle strategy, creative and media.

The agency change comes as the Pittsburg, Texas-based poultry supplier prepares to launch an aggressive retail effort.

"We've really spent a lot of time building up the food-service segment of our business, and as a company we grow 12-15 percent a year," Emery said. "If we want to growat the same rate, we need to get more serious on the retail side."

The company's products are sold under the Pilgrim's Pride and Wampler Foods labels. The client gained a turkey line when it acquired WLR Foods in January.

Billings for the retail effort have not been determined, Emery said.

Temerlin's first tele-vision and print work will break at the end of the first quarter.

The Food Group of New York will continue to handle Pilgrim's business-to-business efforts.

Temerlin chief operating officer Mark Denesuk said his shop plans to seize on demographic trends that affect the category, like the fact that aging consumers often choose chicken over beef for protein.

Pilgrim's is the second-largest poultry producer behind Tyson Foods, which spent $25 million last year on media, according to CMR.