Purple prose

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Gisborne-based grower LeaderBrand has launched an integrated campaign to grow the beetroot category in New Zealand, working with full-service Auckland agency Blackfoot. 

The Eat Your Purples campaign, which has been running throughout the first three months* of 2016, encourages consumers to … eat their purples.

The campaign utilises public relations, social media and advertising – including television (produced in-house at Blackfoot), radio, print, online and busbacks.

“Beetroot is a superfood,” says LeaderBrand general manager Richard Burke. “It’s incredibly nutritious, being high in antioxidants, rich in nitrates, and containing folic acid, and our aim is to get New Zealanders eating more of it.

“By growing the category, we are hoping we will also benefit the health of New Zealanders.

“We chose to work with Blackfoot because they provide an integrated approach, allowing us to work across multiple channels while ensuring consistency of message.”

Blackfoot director Scott Weatherley said: “We were very happy to be approached by LeaderBrand to assist with this project. They have a great product and it’s been good to work on a campaign that’s providing education around healthy eating options.”

As part of the PR activity, LeaderBrand commissioned a survey through Perceptive Research to find out about New Zealanders’ perceptions of beetroot.

According to the survey, 49% of Kiwis see beetroot as ‘an iconic part of New Zealand cuisine’. Despite this, 28% of respondents said they wouldn’t know how to serve it fresh if they were using it for a nice meal.

“Interestingly,” says Burke, “40% of respondents also said they considered beetroot a superfood. Of those surveyed, 73% who eat beetroot at least once every three months will purchase it tinned.

“Beetroot is such an iconic part of New Zealand cuisine, a hamburger isn’t complete without a fried egg and a few slices of beetroot.

“As the survey results highlight though, many Kiwis struggle to serve beetroot in its pure form.

“If consumers don’t have time to prepare raw beetroot, pouched beetroot is a great alternative, as it also has no added sugar or salt. We are trying to show consumers that ‘eating your purples’ is actually easy to do in a healthy, tasty way, and give them pointers in the right direction through the recipes we are providing within our advertising and PR collateral.

Blackfoot opted not to supply a credits list, preferring to characterise their work as “a team effort”.

We asked Blackfoot why they waited three months to release details of the campaign?

“As we have now received extensive results through the campaign, we thought it would be a good time to publicise it,” Weatherley said. “The campaign is still running, finishing up after the end of this month.”

About LeaderBrand
Founded in 1975 by Murray McPhail, LeaderBrand is recognised as one of New Zealand’s largest and most innovative horticultural and fresh food businesses. Still a family owned business, LeaderBrand prides itself on providing fresh produce of the highest quality. By overseeing all stages of production from site selection, soil preparation, planting, growing, harvesting, processing and distributing, LeaderBrand maintains full control of its products from “garden gate to dinner plate”, ensuring the best eating experience possible.

With farms located in Canterbury, Gisborne and Auckland, LeaderBrand grows approximately 3,500ha of fresh produce each year for domestic and international customers. LeaderBrand grows Broccoli, Lettuce, Buttercup, Sweet Corn, Watermelons and a variety of packaged Salads available from the fresh department of your local supermarket shelves.

Perceptive Research
Perceptive Research’s monthly Omnibus surveys a minimum of 1000 New Zealanders online using a nationwide sampling framework. The results are then weighted to Statistics New Zealand census gender, age and location data. 1004 responses were captured in this survey.


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