Tests and the Horseman Saga History has repeated itself. The Horseman Scandal is definitely no new phenomenon in Britain. An article by Jim Reilly (2013) on Daily Mail noted that the ‘UK food chain was rocked by the same crisis 65 years ago’. Though it was not mentioned how the crisis was managed and handled in 1948, it is pretty obvious that the ‘legacy of horseman scandal hangs over [the] food industry’ (Gavin Mega, 2014), this time involving a string of supermarket chains in the I-J.
Although national environment secretary Owen Paterson has confirmed that the beef products which contain reseat pose no health risk’ (BBC, 2013), there has been much controversy about the unethical behavior of mixing horseman to prolong the shelf life of processed meat and misaligning food Oddity Woods, 2013).
Both past and contemporary literature have focused on the importance of maintaining a positive corporate image and reputation, and delivering promised corporate behavior and standards; how identity crisis can lead to adverse consequences; the importance and crucially of businesses to react and respond strategically to the right publics at the right time ND so on and so forth- it is even evident, in real situations whereby failure to manage crisis would affect businesses detrimentally in terms of sales volume, consumer loyalty and trust, revamp of the management and even to the extent of causing a business to collapse.
Take the major British Jewelry company Ratters Group and its Chief Executive, Gerald Irving Ratter for example. Even until today, the famous speech which Gerald Ratter gave to a private function more than a decade ago is still remembered as one of the many other well-known gaffes (The Telegraph, 2007; The Marketing Diary, 2012). In the case of the horseman scandal in Tests, however, there was a big ho-ha about it in the papers, all over the internet and social media as soon as the news unfolded.
But as Stephan Shakespeare (2013) would describe, in a matter of days, Tests started to pick up and recover and the scandal ‘could prove to be a storm in a teacup’. Could it be Deco’s effective crisis management to rebuild corporate image and reputation? Or could it be its proactive public relation planning process? Or could Alex Rent (2013) be right on that ‘trading standards bodies and the Government’s feeble Food Standards Agency are reified of the legal muscle of the supermarket giants’, that as long as a food retailer is ‘big enough’, the politicians will not hold it accountable in fear of food price inflation?
This report is structured as follows-? with reference to appropriate literature reviews and theoretical framework, the next half of this section aims to define what corporate image and reputation are; their importance to a business, seeks to prove how they affect the overall performance and public perception of a business and suggest solutions to improve the management’s image and reputation in relation to Tests and its involvement in the horseman scandal.
The next section aims to discuss why research, planning and evaluation are integral to developing an effective public relations programmer, the importance of proactive planning and seeks to identify the fit between theory and in practice I. E. The horseman saga in Tests. The final section of this report will explore two contemporary public relations tools, how the chosen tools helped Tests reach its publics and communicate relevant information and aims to conclude, from the information and data gathered, if there is a fit between theory and practice. . 1 Corporate Image and Reputation 1. Public Relations and the Management of Image and Reputation 1. 3 Recommendations 2 Research, Planning and Evaluation 2. 1 The Public Relations Planning Process 2. 2 Importance of Proactive Planning Ever since the horseman scandal was disclosed by national newspapers in mid- January 2013, several brands have been brought into the picture and among the many brands, Tests, Britain’s largest supermarket chain, was found to have had beef burgers at the frozen section which contain 29% of horseman.