The Year Ahead

    Preparing for the future and saying goodbye to a year of dramatic events

    CONCLUDING THOUGHTS
    As the new year progresses, 2018 promises to be one filled with competition, driving everyone along the produce supply chain to be more efficient and imaginative in sourcing, packaging, and selling.

    This is where successful marketing and ‘storytelling’ come into play, a recurring theme from last year’s article.

    “Unlike many consumer product goods categories, we already have an inherently good story to tell,” explains Dan’l Mackey Almy, CEO of Dallas, TX-based DMA Solutions. “We just need to commit to articulating and creating a thoughtful plan for sharing our story on social media, in consumer media, on our own websites and blogs, and with infuencers so it’s accessible to everyone.”

    How a company tells its story, however, must be compelling as well as cost effective.

    Goforth agrees with the need for careful spending. “The pressures in the produce industry are unprecedented,” he contends, requiring buyers and sellers to make tough decisions and have difficult conversations with customers. “Every dollar has to be a good spend; every business decision has to have a purpose.”

    For Wendy Reinhardt Kapsak, CEO of the Produce for Better Health Foundation in Wilmington, DE, it’s simple—give consumers plenty of information and they will spend more, and on a wider variety of fresh produce. “Consumers are interested in knowing about their produce from seed to supermarket to sauté pan, and everything between.”

    All images Shutterstock unless stated otherwise.

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    Karen Raugust is a freelance writer who covers business topics ranging from retailing to the food industry.