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Chile will provide strong market support to drive avocado purchases

THE PRODUCE NEWS | by Rand Green | August 13, 2014

With the 2014 Chilean avocado season approaching, the Chilean Avocado Importers Association will be providing strong market support to drive avocado purchases at retail, according to Karen Brux, marketing director for CAI.

“Avocados from Chile are available throughout the fall and winter and into the early part of spring,” said Brux in a written statement to The Produce News. “We expect to see some small volumes enter the market in mid-late September, with promotable volumes available by late October.”  

The 2013-14 season was a “fantastic” year for Chilean avocados “with volumes into the U.S approaching 115 million pounds — more than double what we had originally anticipated,” Brux continued. “With a steady supply of high-quality, great-tasting avocados, we ended the season on a high note.”

Already, “we’ve started meeting with retailers to discuss the upcoming season, and there is a high level of anticipation surrounding the first arrivals of Avocados from Chile,” Brux said in the statement. “As California prepares to exit the market, retailers are eager to transition into Chilean supply. We will continue to make a strong investment in our retail partnerships during the coming season, working to deliver the volume/size profile our customers need, and the marketing support they require to further drive Chilean avocado purchases among their shoppers. Whether working with a 40-store chain or a 4,000-store chain, we sit down with our customers and develop programs that provide support from the start to the end of our season.”

The health and nutrition-focused research done by the Hass Avocado Board “is a key marketing tool for Avocados from Chile,” Brux said. “We incorporate health messages into elements of our marketing campaign, like point-of-sale and social media outreach, and also summarize key findings for our retail partners who are looking for meaningful information to pass on to their consumers. Based on consumer research done by the HAB, ‘being good for you’ and nutritional benefits are strong purchase drivers.”

Avocado consumption “has seen phenomenal growth over the past several years,” Brux said. “In order to achieve continued consumption growth, all of the avocado associations need to give consumers compelling reasons to eat more. Nutrition messages supported by HAB-sponsored research are vital to maintaining growth momentum and Avocados from Chile fully support this effort.”

With “the rapid growth of the U.S. avocado market, the changing role of Avocados from Chile in this market, and the emergence of new marketing channels, it’s time to put a new face on Avocados from Chile,” Brux said. CAIA is developing “a refreshed look for our brand” as well as a new website, new point-of-sale items and new communication pieces “to strengthen relationships with retailers. Everything is currently in development and will be ready for the start of our major promotion push in fall.”

CAIA will also be continuing some marketing elements that were new for the 2013-14 season. One example of this is a full-color, Velcro-fastened RPC wrap. “The Chilean Avocado Importers Association was the first avocado association to introduce RPC wraps into Walmart, and other organizations have since followed,” Brux said in the statement. “They offer substantial real estate to communicate key messages to our consumers.”

In addition to developing customized promotion programs for specific retailers, “we’re also working on a refreshed version of our ‘scratch and win’ promotion that we’ve run for the past few years,” which has been an effective incentive to produce managers “to build big, beautiful displays of Avocados from Chile,” she said

The Super Bowl will continue to be a focus for Avocados from Chile.

“Retailers love to promote during this period, so we work with them to design customized promotions to generate high-impact displays of Avocados from Chile and drive increased purchases.” Those may involve display contests, in-store demos or sales contests, she said.

Additionally, “we are continually expanding and updating our inventory of usage ideas and marketing items to support all the main festivities that occur during the fall and winter months” such as Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year and St. Patrick’s Day, she said.

Avocados from Chile has embraced social media as “a very effective educational tool for delivering compelling information to consumers,” Brux said in the statement. “A well-designed website is also crucial for delivering information to our key constituents (retailers, consumers, media).”

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