A fresh round of 200 pear sampling sessions are underway at Coles and Woolworths stores nationally aimed at further boosting consumer awareness of and purchase of pears, following the success of earlier sampling sessions over summer.
A key focus of the sampling program, which is funded by the marketing levy, is educating consumers on pear ripening so they have the confidence they can get the best from their pears. Consumer feedback has highlighted that the lack of knowledge about pear ripening is a barrier to purchase.
Hort Innovation conducted 286 pear sampling sessions across Woolworths and Coles nationally between November 2017 and January 2018. As reported in In-store pear tasting boosts sales by 24 per cent (Australian Fruitgrower, Apr/May 2018), Woolworths stores showed a 24 per cent increase in overall pear sales in the stores where sampling occurred compared to the previous four weeks. And there was a 66 per cent increase in 1kg sales of prepacked pears.
Due to the great results, a further 200 sampling sessions are being conducted nationally across Woolworths and Coles in August and September 2018. The objectives are to drive awareness of pears in-store to keep them top-of-mind at the point of purchase, educate consumers to give them the confidence to choose ripe pears or ripen them at home, increase varietal awareness, and, ultimately, to drive sales.
The pear stalls display the major pear varieties to explain their difference in flavour, ripening and seasonality, as well as offering sample wedges of Packham pears. Demonstrators are also handing out leaflets containing information on ripening, varieties, seasonality and recipe tips.
Hort Innovation said the initial feedback on the campaign has been positive. Consumers appreciated the information on the leaflets and enjoyed the taste of Packham pears. More results from the sampling campaign will be provided in the next edition.
Speed marketing update 2017/18 overview of marketing activity (Hort Connections 2018 presentation)