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HZPC wants to ditch dull image of potato

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HZPC wants to ditch dull image of potato

April 25
11:34 2013

Dutch company HZPC is a world leader in the marketing of seed potatoes for various applications.

It has more than 10 branch offices abroad and employs well over 230 workers, 800 growers, 55 breeders and in collaboration with foreign branch offices it keeps working on the introduction and commercialisation of new, specific varieties.

An impressive résumé, and yet, HZPC isn’t happy with the current image of the potato: “It lacks emotion,” the company says. Recently HZPC introduced the WOW concept at the Fruit Logistica in Berlin, in a bid to revamp the product’s image. Marketing Project Manager Annemarie Blitterswijk in particular works overtime to make the potato a ‘hot item’ again, especially for young consumers.

“The WOW concept we see as an idea that appeals to emotion, especially to young consumers,” says Annemarie. “In today’s potato business, it’s all work and no play. It is a landscape where the basic potatoes are offered in a way that does not appeal to the young generation. The potato might be seen as healthy, but also as ‘reliable’ and ‘boring’. So we are in danger of losing that demographic. The message we try to convey to young consumers, through a completely different packaging, is that the potato is ‘hot’! It is a versatile dish with potential. Social media can also play a role, because it plays a prominent role in the lives of young people.”

“We realize that we, as a business and an industry, often think exclusively in terms of products. We have now reversed this notion, crafting a concept from the viewpoint of consumers and the lifestyle of consumers. That’s what we did in Berlin. The response was very positive. The packages were very well-received.”

“The WOW concept isn’t yet released in supermarkets,” says Annemarie. “Customers are free to sell the varieties, which we have placed under the concept, using another brand. We would like to cooperate with our customers to further develop the strategy.”

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