Prawn project boosts career prospects

Jackson Jaensch and Lindsey Peshanoff

A research project to help protect Australia's prawn industry has given two UniSA marketing students the industry experience they will need to find a job.

Final year marketing students Jackson Jaensch and Lindsey Peshanoff have just completed the Marketing Project, a special study option that gives final year marketing students the opportunity to conduct a marketing research project for a real business.

Jaensch and Peshanoff have spent the last 16 weeks working on a project for the Brisbane-based Australian Prawn Farmers Association.

"The focus of the project was to determine consumer preferences when choosing prawns, with a focus on generation X and Y," said Jaensch.

The project put into practice the knowledge they have gained during their undergraduate studies at UniSA's School of Marketing.

During the four-month project, Jaensch and Peshanoff ran in-depth interviews and in-store surveys with consumers, retailers and producers around Australia. They attended an industry conference in Townsville, and also travelled to Sydney and Brisbane to conduct market research.

"At the conference we gained an idea of how the industry works and made contacts that helped us throughout the project," Jaensch said.

At the completion of the project Jaensch and Peshanoff presented their findings to the Association, providing insights to help protect the industry and develop a positive marketing campaign strategy much like the highly successful Agricultural and Meat and Livestock Australia campaigns.

Helen Jenkins, Executive Officer for the Association, said young Australian consumers were becoming much more discerning and keen to buy Australian produce.

"This student research project has proved invaluable for the Association and at the same time has really benefited the students," she said. "They have been immersed in the industry across the board, from buyers to farmers and researchers. The skills they have gained in communications, relationship-building and understanding their clients will be critical to them in their careers in the future."

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