Fresh produce businesses are continually looking for ways to increase their market share and sales. At PMA A-NZ, we’ve recently run a number of activities to look past this and pose the question, how do we increase the overall consumption of fresh produce?
Below are the key takeaways from these activities.
When marketing fresh produce, nobody argues the health benefits it provides. However, PMA research that looks into the experiences consumers want from food, shows that health messaging alone is not an adequate driver of consumer choice.
PMA has identified six broad experiential food association drivers of preference, which are important to understand why consumers are making the food decisions they are. The only one of these drivers which can have a negative response to preference is “Healthy”.
So, whilst there is no argument that fruit and vegetables are healthy, marketers need to look beyond this and look to push the experience fruit and vegetables provide.
Generations shop differently and when it comes to marketing fresh produce, one size does not fit all. It’s now more important than ever to have a strong understanding of how different generations consume and shop. Children are now more connected to technology and social platforms than ever before and we need to continuously look at trends with a future lense to understand what is coming next.
Consumers are becoming more aware of the impact what they are eating is having on the environment, and newer generations are looking at food differently. Story-telling to this generation is important to help them understand where their food is coming from and businesses need to think of their “social licence” at all times.
Marketers need to understand the drivers and barriers to produce consumption to be able to find opportunities for new and existing products. PMA has conducted a range of research across six key eating occasions to determine the drivers and barriers to produce consumption in Australia and other International markets.
The eating occasion of ‘breakfast/brunch out of the home’ in the Australian lifestyle stood out as a key opportunity within our industry. Consumers considered this meal to be “indulgent” and was about ‘enjoyment’ and ‘being social’. However, many of the meals being consumed in this occasion had a good representation of fruit and vegetables on the plate. How can we learn from this occasion to bring the “fun” of fruit and vegetables into other occasions where they are not traditionally consumed?
People want their food to be convenient and accessible. In a short city walk consumers have multiple opportunities to buy a coffee, but very few to buy ready to go fruit and vegetables. If we want to increase fresh produce consumption we need to map out where it’s not accessible and make it more readily available.
Produce businesses need to design their distribution from beginning to end to give themselves the best opportunity to grow. We often hear about the desire for more snacking produce, but how can we better get the right product to those who want to snack? What packaging is required? Where will it be purchased? Where will it be eaten?
We need to look to the best FMCG marketers to learn lessons and case studies and then look to apply the learnings to fresh.
Due to increased competition across retail it is becoming harder for retailers to introduce new products to market. Food service, however, can be a catalyst for new products and with over 1.5 million meal kits being consumed in the home each week, there is a huge opportunity for producers.
With the increased desire for convenience, the food service market is going to continue to grow. The Australian Drivers and Barriers report found that Australians like to eat healthy at the beginning of the week and eat out or order in towards the end of the week and across the weekend. Food service can be used to make meal time quick and easy, whilst still providing the share of plate that fruit and vegetables should have.