May 2015
Heard on the Radio By Abby Kleckler

Kale sprouts1The buzzword “superfood” is printed in nearly every magazine that lands in my mailbox. Whether it’s the hottest nutrient-packed snack that “you need to try” or a celebrity’s praise for a trendy “new” veggie, the marketing world has latched on to the superfood campaign.

I am not much of a cook, but it was exactly one year ago (as noted by an app that pulls photos taken on the same day in previous years) that I jumped on the superfood bandwagon: I prepared Brussels sprouts for the first time.

Testing a Brussels sprouts recipe I found on Pinterest may not seem like a big deal, but those sprouts marked the beginning of an adventurous attitude with cooking.

I’ve since successfully tried a handful of trendy superfoods, so my ears perked up when I recently heard a radio spot for Trader Joe’s Kale Sprouts. The hybrid of Brussels sprouts and Russian Red Kale is nothing new, but Trader Joe’s gave this product a story.

They painted a picture of it looking like a shuttlecock – “that thing in badminton” – and described the flavor as a little nutty and a little sweet.

The radio ad was so convincing I made a special trip to a Trader Joe’s that week to hunt down Kale Sprouts. They stood out on a wall full of leafy greens with the sign shown above.

Talk about good advertising from A to Z. The company piqued my interest, told me the background and followed through with in-store merchandising.

In this issue of Lawn & Garden Retailer, you’ll find a large portion of the content centered around edibles (pages 12-20). We’ve packed this issue full of practical tips: Supply outside-the-box containers that feature ornamental edibles. Get kids excited about veggies even before their parents. Become a cook’s destination for herbs.

These ideas can be the start of an edible gardening action plan at your garden center.

A Fresh Focus

Consumer Reports launched its annual supermarket survey in April, and although the top-rated store did not change – New York-based Wegmans received high marks once again – one word earned new emphasis: fresh.

The highest scores were given to chains that displayed the names of local producers, along with their family photos. Other stores received praise for advertising produce variety and health benefits.

Fresh can mean many different things: Maybe these fruits and vegetables were recently picked, maybe they’re unprocessed, or maybe they’re even organic.

What efforts do you make to tell customers how fresh their purchases are? And it’s not just for edibles. Do you mention your growers by name? Do your customers know what you grow yourself?

Customers want a story. So make sure they know yours.

Abby Kleckler

Abby is the managing editor of Lawn & Garden Retailer. Contact her at [email protected]


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