IRVINE, CA -- "Authenticity" has long been a watchword of the California
Avocado Commission, and never more than with the inception of the
California avocado grower marketing campaign.
This season, California avocado growers have elevated their level of
involvement in the consumer campaign by making personal appearances at
retailer events and by interacting with consumers as well as the media to
create personalized marketing experiences.
"Grower appearances at consumer events provide important opportunities to
bring the campaign to life and complement our traditional advertising with
marketing that puts the growers face to face with media influencers and
consumers," Jan DeLyser, the commission's vice president of marketing, said
in an Aug. 19 press release.
Recently California avocado grower Gene Bianchi guided radio personality and
restaurateur Evan Kleiman on a tour of his avocado grove, Bianchi Farms in De
Luz. Ms. Kleiman broadcast her interview and talked about her California
avocado experience on the popular show "Good Food" on KCRW, Southern
California's largest National Public Radio affiliate.
Valley Center avocado growers Mike Sanders and Chris Ambuul also
contributed to the personalized marketing campaign by serving as judges for
the commission's Best Guacamole contest and taking guest food bloggers on
a tour of their groves. The bloggers then created a video about the tour,
which can be seen at www.whiteonricecouple.com/the-hungry-
California avocado growers have also supported retailer activities that help
market the fruit. A major national retailer that has developed an innovative
locally grown initiative invited California avocado growers to participate at
"mini farmers market" events to interact with shoppers, promoting the
availability of locally grown produce at some of its stores. Growers Jamie
Johnson and Matt Witman talked with the chain's customers, sharing how
California avocados are grown and providing tips for selecting, handling and
using the fruit.
"The messages of 'hand grown in California,' 'locally grown' or 'grown in the
USA' can be very powerful tools for avocado retailers," Ms. DeLyser said in the
release. "Sixty-one percent of shoppers ages 25 and older say that it is
important that the avocados they buy are grown in the United States."
The commission also provides retailers with information about California
avocado growers, helping them tell the story of how the avocados they sell
are produced, and by whom. The commission supplies recipe cards, usage
tips and signage customized for in-store promotions and retailer special
events. Retailer cooking schools on both coasts have featured recipes and tips
created by California avocado growers, with a chain in the Midwest producing
a video instructing class attendees how to select, handle and ripen California