Sobeys aims to make green easy

The retailer's new in-store program eschews talking up the benefits of produce and instead focuses on showing consumers how to incorporate it in their meals.

187 Marinated cucumber resizedProduce is taking centre stage in Sobeys’ latest push under its “Better Food For All” platform, which kicks off Friday.

The retailer’s nationwide, month-long “Power up with Green” program encourages consumers to incorporate produce into their weekly meal plans with tips and recipe booklets and POS featuring Sobeys spokesperson chef Jamie Oliver. The campaign will receive support outside of the store through the Sobeys flyer in its Better Food News section, as well as through digital and social (owned channels and paid), plus PR. Agency partners include with Fish Out of Water Design for creative design, POS production by Xerox and High Road handling communication.

Consumers already know the benefits of eating greens and are looking for ways to cook meals more easily, says Paul Kurvits, director, brand marketing, Sobeys. So the retailer wanted to go beyond showcasing the benefits of eating greens and provide solutions to make it easy.

While the program does generally target the retailer’s overarching consumer base, it primarily aims to reach a group it refers to as “fresh food enthusiasts,” who want to discover new meal ideas, while a key driver behind their grocery decisions is around fresh food, he says.

The tips and tricks can provide an introduction for consumers who don’t opt for produce as often, he says, but the program really shows shoppers how to incorporate greens more regularly into meals.

After the holidays, consumers think about ways to improve their eating, he adds, although he notes the program is not a response to category decline.

The retailer’s “Better Food For All” platform, which launched in 2013, encourages consumers to “eat better, feel better and do better.” Earlier this month Sobeys kicked off a contest asking consumers to post content online around how better food decisions have helped them achieve this, using the hashtag #BetterFoodForAll to win a trip to London, England and a cooking class with Oliver. Additionally, the retailer launched an eight-week contest, giving away Vitamix blenders weekly until Feb. 25.

Image of marinated cucumber recipe developed by Oliver and Sobeys for the program