by Claire Lentsch/a contributor to The Shelby Report
Produce thrives when it is fresh, affordable, exciting and expresses vintage appeal. It is healthy, fast and filling, making it the ideal snack. Nobody has to question, “Is this good for me?”
Consumers assume most items in the produce category will improve their health, and these natural health benefits make produce a goldmine in the grocery store. But the quality of the produce is important.
Along with quality, convenience is important. One solution is pre-cut fruit, which is fresh and fast. Cleaning and preparing produce while in a rush can be a bit of a hassle. Pre-cut fruit allows one to simply grab it from the fridge.
Along with saving time, Generation Z wants to save money and help the environment. The environment is a priority, so packaging needs to be environmentally friendly so that they feel good about their purchase.
Overly descriptive packaging is unneeded because produce sells itself. Display the fruit and embrace the natural ambiance. By reducing the packaging, it not only helps the environment, it also displays the company’s confidence in its product. Build trust by offering lesser-packaged produce. Let the produce sell itself.
Generation Z shoppers are foodies. Eating is less a chore and more of an experience, so give these consumers a memorable one. Help them celebrate different cultures and traditions by finding new recipes that incorporate produce, like exotic fruits and vegetables.
While these exotic foods alone are interesting, adding a backstory onto the product’s display helps consumers explore a world of taste within the comfort of their own home. Regardless of what the product is, share a story to educate consumers—bring the farmers market to life.
You can also apply cross-merchandising in the produce department to help overall sales. Sell reusable containers so the consumer can take the product anywhere without the added waste of a “one-time-package.”
Instruments used to cut fruit in a new and/or easier way can spice up the produce section as well.
It also is a good idea to merchandise non-produce products within the produce department. Set up stands to hold these different products. For instance, try placing a dairy pairing display with the strawberries.
And cheese goes with everything. Cheese, granola and produce set up the perfect snack to fuel a day. What is more fitting than having a reusable container to carry these products with you?
We all have a sweet tooth, so why not introduce fresh fruit desserts into the produce area? Consumers may feel inspired to purchase these sweet treats or, better yet, to try to make their own.
Generation Z is drawn to vintage design. Replace the plastic in the produce department with wood. When in doubt, vintage it out. Generation Z loves the idea of getting back to the basics. The old-fashioned feel provides a more relaxed and authentic feel.
Editor’s note: Claire Lentsch was invited by The Shelby Report to share her perspective as a member of Generation Z (born since the mid-1990s) and a consumer.