Heard on the Tradeshow Floor: United Fresh 2014 Recap
Last week members of our team accompanied our clients, Pro*Act USA, Harvest Sensations and Greener Fields Together, to Chicago for the 2014 United Fresh Show. One thing is clear, the produce industry is teeming with branding, marketing and research opportunities. Events such as these always inspire creative solutions.
#UnitedFresh2014 delivered the perfect networking and educational atmosphere from Hillary Clinton’s keynote to the highly attended post-conference panel on branding. We were inundated with ideas and information and we’d like to share the top trends we noticed while walking the show floor.
- It’s all about the packaging!
Nearly every brand showed an interest in providing convenient, innovative packaging options. We heard time and time again how consumers have responded to produce kits. Low preparation time, minimum cooking or ready-to-eat options are the future of produce packaging. Our latest merchandising design project for client, Harvest Sensations Kale Blast, highlights the ease of healthy juicing. Mucci Farms is focusing on a younger consumer with their new Veggies to Go packaging.
- Flavor is the name of the game!
Unique flavor combinations have found their way into the marketing mix. Specialized options can be found from the produce department to the seasoning aisle and everywhere in between. Kraft entices customers to jazz up popcorn, produce & meats with this new product.
- Constant consumer engagement!
There is emphasis on earning a spot on the consumer’s grocery list BEFORE they leave home for the store and not leaving it up to chance that your product will be selected once they reach their shopping destination. This goal is the driving force behind heightened digital and social media activity. Pinterest, Facebook, twitter, responsive and/or mobile website and apps are receiving much higher priority by many brands.
- Research and collaboration
Big data has impacted this industry as significantly as any other. Brands are researching trends, harnessing the enormous amount of consumer insight available and sharing their analysis with their colleagues for the greater good of the industry.
This is an exciting time to be involved with the fresh food industry and we are back at work implementing the concepts we’ve seen and trends we tracked while working with the best in the business.