During its sixth annual National Expo, UNFI announced the 30 category winners of its 23rd annual Master Marketer competition, which recognizes best-in-class marketing efforts by independent grocery retailers served by UNFI’s wholesale distribution business.
In addition to the category winners, Dick’s Fresh Market, a family owned and operated grocer with five stores in Western Wisconsin and Southern Minnesota was named the 2019 Grand Master Marketer for overall consistent performance over the years. In recognition, UNFI presented Dick’s Fresh Market with a $25,000 grant, payable to its charity of choice.
“Independent grocers continue to display innovation in connecting with their customers by creating and implementing powerful and effective marketing and merchandising programs around the country,” said Brian Audette, UNFI SVP, merchandising and category management. “The grocery industry remains as competitive as ever and the Master Marketer Awards identify grocers who excel at building lasting relationships that keep consumers loyal to their brands. Congratulations to all of the participants and winners.”
More than 475 marketing programs were submitted for the 2019 Master Marketer awards, which are judged based on the creativity, clarity and effectiveness of the stores’ marketing efforts. Entries were assessed by professors and grad students from the California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, California, and Virginia Tech PRISM’s program.
Using a mobile app developed specifically for UNFI’s National Expo, attendees were able to participate in a live poll for the Master Marketer People’s Choice Award. In this category, eight nominees in the TV commercial category were given another chance at being recognized for their TV spots. With 25 percent of the vote, Skogen’s Festival Foods in DePere, Wisconsin, was presented with the People’s Choice Award.
Store winners by category include:
Stores 30,000 s.f. and smaller
- Center Store Department—Dick’s Fresh Market, Amery, Wisconsin
- Extra Effort Advertising—My Fresh Basket, Spokane, Washington
- Fresh Department—Troy Foods, Indianapolis, Indiana
- Grand Opening/Anniversary—Brink’s Market, Chisago City, Minnesota
- Industry Promotion—Krause’s Supervalu, Garrison, North Dakota
- Private Brands—Beyars Market, Staten Island, New York
- Public Service/Community—Graceway Trading, Providenciales, Turks and Caicos
- Radio Spots—Great Valu, Chincoteague, Virginia
- TV Commercials—My Fresh Basket, Spokane, Washington
- Website/Social Media—Shopper’s Value Foods, Hamilton, Alabama
- Tier 1 Master Marketer—Brink’s Market, Chisago City, Minnesota
Stores larger than 30,000 s.f.
- Center Store Department—Palubicki’s Family Market, Fosston, Minnesota
- Extra Effort Advertising—Dorothy Lane Market, Dayton, Ohio
- Fresh Department—Chris’ Food Center, Sandstone, Minnesota
- Grand Opening/Anniversary—Hudson Market House, Hudson, Michigan
- Industry Promotion—Mackenthun’s Fine Foods, Waconia, Minnesota
- Private Brands—Sherm’s Thunderbird Market, Medford, Roseburg, Klamath Falls, Ore.
- Public Service/Community—Metcalfe’s, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin
- Radio Spots—Elmer’s County Market, Escanaba, Michigan
- TV Commercials—Sherm’s Thunderbird Market, Medford, Roseburg, Klamath Falls, Oregon
- Website/Social Media—Glenshaw Shop ‘N Save, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- Tier 2 Master Marketer—Sherm’s Thunderbird Market, Medford, Roseburg, Klamath Falls, Oregon
Store groups with five or more locations
- Center Store Department—Karns Quality Foods, Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania
- Extra Effort Advertising—America’s Food Basket, Lake Success, New York
- Fresh Department—Trig’s, Minocqua, Wisconsin
- Grand Opening/Anniversary—Vallarta Supermarkets, Sylmar, California
- Industry Promotion—Dick’s Fresh Market, Menomonie, Wisconsin
- Private Brands—Supermercados La Colonia, Honduras
- Public Service/Community—Hornbacher’s Osgood, Fargo, North Dakota
- Radio Spots—Shop ‘N Save, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- TV Commercials—Corner Markets, Hattiesburg, Mississippi
- Website/Social Media—The Fresh Market, Greensboro, North Carolina
- Tier 3 Master Marketer—Corner Markets, Hattiesburg, Mississippi
Combined with Supervalu, UNFI is the largest publicly traded grocery distributor in America with expected annual sales of more than $21 billion. UNFI delivers a wide variety of products to customer locations throughout North America, including natural product superstores, independent retailers, conventional supermarket chains, e-commerce retailers and foodservice customers.