Hey Tom Brady – Fun Foods are Here to Stay, But …

So the great Tom Brady has declared that Coca-Cola is “poison.”

With his football deflation controversy adjudicated but not forgotten, he decided to wade into the food nutrition debate and attack major American corporations. They really love him at NFL headquarters now!

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Golf Ball Sized Apples Bring Easy, Healthy Snacking Innovation

Photo: Havelock North Fruit Company.

Photo: Havelock North Fruit Company.

A New Zealand company has come up with a new, innovative concept to market a product that’s thousands of years old:  the apple.

It’s a combination of agricultural technology and smart marketing.

The Havelock North Fruit Company developed the capability to grow mini apples that are just 1.5 times the size of a golf ball (via cross-breeding selected varieties).  Next came packaging inspiration that put five apples into a hand-held , transparent tube.  The concept was tied together with an attention-generating brand called  Rockit™.

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Fun Test at School: Get Your Healthy Lunch from the Food Truck

You might think it’s a mission impossible marketing challenge to get high school students excited about, and actually eating, healthier school lunches.

Perhaps not.  A Colorado high school nutrition team, facing an 80% non-dining rate, has come up with a creative, disruptive action plan.  

Photo: iStock.

Photo: iStock.

Last week,  the Boulder Valley School District agreed to accept a $75,000 donation from Whole Foods to acquire a used food truck and create their own healthy eating food truck program.

It’s smart marketing for two, key reasons: Continue reading

Arrowhead Mills Gets it Right with Cereal Package Update

If you just read headlines, you’d think marketers flunk every time when it comes to package redesign.

Not true.

Logo from Arrowhead Mills.

Logo from Arrowhead Mills.

I’m happy to report that my favorite cereal brand, Arrowhead Mills, has done a nice job updating their healthy, grain-based line of cereals.

And by the way, not to get onto a related but different topic here, it’s not that hard to add healthy (fiber, whole grains, low added sugars) and good tasting cereals to your breakfast table.

There weren’t any grievous issues with the old cereal packaging, but the use of a white background provides a contemporary, fresh and up-to-date feel.

Arrowhead Mills has wisely continued with the prominent front-panel, content benefit statements (e.g., whole grain, fiber, low fat).  This is the right approach based on consumer learning from when I worked for global ingredient supplier Tate & Lyle. Continue reading

Commodity? Not All Chicken is the Same

Marketers are always looking for differentiation.  Finding or creating it is one thing.  Doing something with it is another.

Memo to all chicken shoppers:  Have you ever noticed that many brands add salt/saltwater?  You have to read the label closely (68% of Americans read the nutrition facts panel) and then you’ll notice that you’re buying chicken-plus.  You might be okay with that.  For those who are not, poultry marketer Foster Farms gives you a choice.

The company notes that “”plumping” – or the injecting – of fresh, raw chicken with saltwater is a practice employed by many chicken companies.”  Director of Marketing Ira Brill,  commenting on his company’s consumer survey, revealed that “most consumers have no idea that the fresh, raw chicken they purchase intending to season or marinate themselves can contain such high levels of salt.”  He added that “fresh chicken is a staple for many families’ healthy diets and consumers should be able to trust that they are getting the nutritious ingredient they expect, not a salt-laden imitation.”

Foster Farms was able to benefit from a confluence of consumer trends:  continued concern about high levels of sodium in food; increasing quantity and sophistication of label readers; and a desire for fewer, easy-to-understand ingredients.  Their team identified a marketplace opportunity and then created strong marketing communications to capitalize on the point-of-difference, first with clever tv commercials and now with a “Say NO to Plumping” Facebook social media promotion.

Click on the photos below to watch the commercials and visit the Facebook page.

Foster Farms TV Commercials

Headline For Marketers:  When  you’ve got meaningful differentiation, market the heck out of it.  When you don’t have it, gear your innovation efforts to get it.  If it’s just not possible, out-execute your competitors.

Harvey Chimoff is a hands-on marketing leader and business-wide collaborator who builds marketing capabilities in B2B/B2C organizations that drive customer success.