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There’s a lot to be said for just ‘being you’. In a world filled with cosmetic ‘perfection’, we are all too quick to judge and discard anything deemed unattractive. Several campaigns over the years have set about changing our perceptions and unlocking the power of brand authenticity.

However, nobody has ever taken on the authenticity in food marketing – until now!
Enter the inglorious fruits and vegetables campaign.

French supermarket chain Intermarché was inspired to take action after a global study estimated that a third of all food produced (1.3 billion tons) gets wasted every year. A significant amount of produce grown never makes it to the supermarket shelves, simply because it is not deemed pretty enough.

The inglorious fruits and vegetables campaign was a rational appeal to the head, evoking the desire to not waste food. Typically double pronged carrots, incompletely formed lemons and not exactly elegantly morphed aubergines wouldn’t make it to the shelf. But why shouldn’t they?

Consumers were urged to eat five different varieties of previously rejected fruit and vegetables and receive a 30% discount on their purchase for doing so. They were assured that taste would not be compromised – a claim reinforced with the production of inglorious soups and fruit juices made from the produce. Intermarché bought from growers the produce they usually throw away, and gave them their own labeling and their own isle.

The results:

  • Average of 1.2 tons of produce sold per store during the first two days
  • 24% increase in overall store traffic
  • Increased food waste awareness
  • Social media reach of over 13 million people after one month

At its core, this was a campaign based on logic: to stop food waste. But ultimately it demonstrates how their marketing process was authentic. They told it and sold the way it is. It highlighted the way fruit and vegetables actually look when not pumped-up, genetically modified, or cosmetically enhanced.

So, what can we all learn from a misfit vegetable? That being authentic can be incredibly powerful in your marketing efforts. When your brand is authentic, it is true to its mission and purpose. And most importantly, nobody is left questioning anything about you.


Article originally written as part of Nuance & Fathom’s portfolio.

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