Lunch highlights sweet apples and consumption trends.
More than 40 attendees from consumer media explored ways to promote and drive produce consumption at the Connect with Fresh 2023 Consumer Media and Influencer Lunch during the New York Produce Show, Dec. 6.
The 14th annual New York Produce Show and Conference (NYPS) opened Dec. 5. The event had a record audience of more than 5,000 executives attending the one-day trade show and three co-located events. There were 350-plus exhibiting companies and a record of 41 sponsors. The New York Produce Show is organized by Produce Business and the Eastern Produce Council.
Journalists and dietitians from cooking magazines, food, nutrition and recipe blogs, radio programs, news services, other social media outlets and television spent one-on-one time with representatives from Envy Apples, Have a Plant/Foundation for Fresh Produce and VegPower.
The lunch was opened by Kate MacKenzie, food policy executive director for the New York City Mayor’s Office of Food Policy, who welcomed participants and highlighted the mission of New York City to drive a healthy city. She also encouraged attendees with ways they can actively participate.
Lunch sponsor Envy Apples, Torrance, CA, treated attendees to an informative presentation by Cecilia Flores Paez, head of marketing.
“Envy is grown across both hemispheres and over three continents using world-class growing methods and techniques to deliver a superior apple from field to market,” she says. “We’re also excited to announce the planting of the brand’s first orchards in New York state, with expected availability in two years.”
Chef Abbie Gellman, Envy spokesperson, shared flavors, recipes and tips for using Envy apples. During her demo, she invited two attendee volunteers to prepare a delectable tasting board using Envy apples and other ingredients.
The lunch welcomed keynote speaker Dan Parker, chief executive of VegPower in the United Kingdom, a not-for-profit alliance of government, business, community and celebrities founded to turn around vegetable consumption in the UK.
Parker discussed consumption promotion and some of the campaigns and techniques they are using, including encouraging kids to “Eat Them to Defeat Them,” a multi-award-winning program that has millions of children eating more vegetables.
Parker related how the campaign uses advertising and communications to inspire kids to eat vegetables and create life-long good food habits that they will, in turn, share with their children.
“The old messages of health do not lead to increased consumption with kids,” he says. “We must think differently about how to influence kids to eat more vegetables. And, the bottom line with kids is that it has to be fun!”
Katie Calligaro, director of marketing and communications for the Foundation For Fresh Produce (FFP), Newark, DE, also joined the program to discuss solutions for how plant-passionate communicators can help consumers Have A Plant at food retail, in restaurants, at home and every time they eat.
“For decades, Have A Plant (and FFP’s precursor PBH) have invested in developing trended insights on attitudes toward all forms of fruit and vegetable consumption,” she says. “Have A Plant provides compelling resources for the powerful role fruits and vegetables can play to create happy, healthy and active lives.”
Recipes, snack hacks, meal ideas and other tips from chefs, registered dietitians, as well as food and wellness experts, are available at www.fruitsandveggies.org, she says. “It’s your one-stop-shop.”
After the lunch, media attendees interacted with hundreds of produce companies at the exposition to glean information for future story and recipe ideas. They also viewed culinary student and chef demos, attended educational micro-sessions and participated in the industry tours the next day.
SAVE THE DATE!
Mark your calendar for next year’s New York Produce Show and Conference: Dec. 10-12, 2024.
And exhibitors, book your booth now, as there’s a limited time to maintain the current booth rate. Visit www.nyproduceshow.com/exhibit2024 or talk to your sales representative before Jan. 10 to lock in the 2023 rate!