Can a Walmart Recipe Contest Boost Food Sales?
Can a recipe competition involving Walmart workers lead to more sales of salsa and produce?
We’ll soon find out.
Walmart and salsa brand Fresh Cravings are holding what they call a fall-themed recipe competition called the Associate Cookoff Contest. The contest, which launched earlier in September, is open to all Walmart workers. Participants submit comfort food or holiday-inspired recipes to their local store’s Facebook page.
Contestants are encouraged to take a non-traditional approach to their recipe submissions in order to impress a panel of prominent food experts that include Chef Chloe Coscarelli, Chef Tiffany Derry, Chef Peter Sherman and Registered Dietitian Mia Syn. They will select three winning recipes to be unveiled in October.
Contest winners will receive premium kitchen gear and exclusive culinary virtual cooking experiences led by the judging panel. Each experience will highlight the judge’s diverse expertise in the culinary world. Coscarelli will break down vegan and vegetarian cooking techniques, for instance. Derry will focus on regional Southern cuisine while Sherman will lead a grilling-focused class. Syn will round out the experiences with a nutritional focus on fresh, healthy ingredients. The contest will culminate with an e-book of winning recipes — and, presumably, more enthusiasm for and knowledge about the salsa among Walmart’s vast workforce.
“During this incredibly difficult time for our nation, we are enormously inspired by the front-line efforts of Walmart Associates—we should consider all grocery associates as essential workers,” said Jay Whitney, president of FoodStory Brands, which owns Fresh Cravings. “Our goal with this partnership is to honor their contributions during these highly uncertain times and celebrate culinary talent. As a brand sold in the Produce Department, we believe highlighting the accessibility of Walmart’s healthy and fresh ingredients is a welcome message to many, many consumers at this time, as they turn to home cooking solutions."
Bentonville, Arkansas-based Walmart operates more than 11,300 stores under 58 banners in 27 countries, and e-commerce websites, employing 2.2 million-plus associates worldwide. Walmart U.S. is No. 1 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer's list of the top food retailers in North America, while Walmart-owned Sam's Club ranks No. 9 on the list.