To mark its fifth Produce for Kids in-store cause marketing campaign, Harps Food Stores has kicked off Produce for Kids Fridays at Harps locations through the end of August. Along with in-store signage featuring healthy, easy meal ideas for families, the independent grocer’s produce teams are serving as campaign ambassadors at Harps stores, donning Fruits & Veggies & Giving Back T-shirts every Friday while doling out $1 produce bucks coupons, enabling families to try new fruits and vegetables.
The aim of the weekly activity is to build shopper awareness and offer customers incentives to make healthier choices by putting more fresh produce in their carts. Since 2017, the Harps Produce for Kids campaign, part of the larger Associated Wholesale Grocers Springfield, Missouri, division campaign, has provided 880,000 meals for needy families via local Feeding America food banks.
“It was important to me to bring our entire produce team together to make a direct impact with shoppers for this meaningful campaign,” noted Mike Roberts, produce director at Springdale, Arkansas-based Harps. “The team has something to get excited about, and [this] gives them the opportunity to interact with shoppers by encouraging families to add new fruits and vegetables to their baskets.”
The campaign’s produce partners are listed on the back of the produce teams’ T-shirts, and teams are directing shoppers to take note of those produce companies that are giving back to the community. Partners will also be spotlighted weekly with ad support and recipes showcasing their product.
Partners for 2021 are Chelan Fresh, Crispy Green, Dole, Eat Smart, Greenridge Fruit, Halos, Litehouse, Michigan Apples, organicgirl, POM Wonderful, RealSweet Onions, Red Sun Farms, River Fresh Farms, Sage Fruit, SamSonS grapes, Peelz Mandarins, Sunkist, Tasteful Selections and Wonderful Pistachios.
“It is absolutely inspiring to see the Harps team come together in this way and make a direct impact with shoppers,” noted Trish James, VP of Orlando, Florida-based Healthy Family Project. “Our campaigns are individualized to make sense for each of our retail partners, and it’s been a blast implementing new and innovative ideas in Harps stores.”
Among the other Healthy Family Project marketing efforts throughout the year are regular Facebook Live Cooking classes broadcast on both the Produce for Kids and Harps Facebook pages, and a sustainability-focused website offering ideas for families at home and highlighting partners involved in sustainable efforts.
Healthy Family Project is sharing Produce for Kids Fridays in-store photos from Harps weekly on its LinkedIn page as different produce brands are featured.
Since its creation in 2002 by Shuman Farms, Healthy Family Project has raised more than $7 million to aid children and families.
Harps operates 113 supermarkets in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas. The company is the largest employee-owned company based in Arkansas and the 20th largest in the United States.