Progressive Grocer

AUG 2015

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August 2015 | | 83 Going Long Chelan Fresh Marketing, a Chelan, Wash.-based marketer of fresh cherries, apples and pears, is one of the 39 suppliers participating in the Eat Brighter program. Tis summer marks Chelan's frst selling Eat Brighter cherries. Te company will expand the program to include 3-pound bags of apples and pears featuring "Sesame Street" characters this fall. To capture the attention of older kids, Chelan is participating in Fuel Up to Play 60, a program founded by the National Dairy Council and the NFL, in collaboration with the USDA, which encourages students to choose good-for-you foods and be active for at least 60 minutes every day. Par- ticipating students can win such prizes as an NFL player visit or Super Bowl tickets. Additionally, in coordination with the 50 th Super Bowl, Chelan will ofer this January and Febru- ary 3- and 5-pound bags of apples and pears that feature the Fuel Up campaign. "Kids see the program in school, and our hope is that when they see the apples in the store, they tug on Mom's arm and say, 'Tat's one of the fuel foods I'm supposed to eat,'" says Mac Riggan, director of marketing for Chelan. "Our marketing program is about infuencing the tastes of emerging consumers," adds Riggan. "Our hope is they'll be so used to eating fruits and vegetables that when they have their own money, they'll buy an apple or a cup of cherries instead of a bag of chips." Back to School with Produce Dedicated to educating families on the benefts of healthy eating, providing simple meal solutions and raising money for children's nonproft organiza- tions, Orlando, Fla.-based Produce for Kids (PFK) recently wrapped its 13 th Annual Healthy Eating Campaign. Since 2002, the campaign has raised $5 million for children's charities. Tis year, PFK teamed with 35 produce compa- nies and seven retailers nationwide to increase fruit and vegetable consumption by ofering in-store and online meal solutions, recipes and tips for families Today, Eat Brighter boasts 110 participants, 39 of which are suppliers. PMA's research team, which has been collecting sales data from sup- pliers, retailers and promotional boards since the beginning of the year, initially reported that participants, on average, were seeing a 1 percent to 2 percent increase in sales over last year. More recent data fnd participants reporting a 3 percent to 4 percent increase in sales. "It's consumer recognition of the Eat Brighter movement like this that can really drive positive responses to the program," asserts Burns of the campaign, which frst launched in March 2013. While the Eat Brighter initiative appeals to the nation's youngest consumers and their fami- lies, PMA is also a founding supporter of another PHA-led program called FNV (Fruits and Veg- etables), which uses aggressive advertising and catchy marketing to promote fruit and vegetable consumption to teens and their families. On a related note, the FNV launch video produced by comedy television and Internet network Funny or Die, starring First Lady Michelle Obama, Big Bird and comedian Billy Eichner, has been nominated for an Emmy. ' 'Sparking Evolution' Two years into Eat Brighter and six months into FNV, Burns admits that these marketing cam- paigns aren't about overnight successes, but rather aim to spark a dietary evolution. "As far as progress is concerned, this is a jour- ney we'll be embarking on for a long time to come. But that doesn't mean that many of the tools and tactics we're tak- ing now — including using smart marketing to engage children at a young age and make them life- long consumers — isn't working," asserts Burns. "In fact, we're confdent that it will aid consumption statistics, but it's just one tool," she continues. "Trough a combined efort, a tena- cious dedication and doing what we do best — producing healthy, delicious product — we're in a great position to help make change." I believe, as an industry, we feel a sense of duty in regards to fighting childhood obesity." —Cathy Burns, Produce Marketing Association

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