19/09/2019 by Adam Cuming
It was a great week of learning, meeting new people and old friends at Hong Kong Fruit Logistica this year. We arrived to a melee of protester disruption at the airport, but otherwise during the week whilst there was an elevated tension, it remained calm. The trade show itself was quieter than last year however the overwhelming feedback from our booth buddies: PurePac, Darling Group, Wilcox and JR Orchards was that all the serious buyers turned up and it was a worthwhile investment.
Next level consumer engagement
This year we attended the Asia Fruit Congress day which precedes HK Fruit Logistica. This event is run by Fruitnet, the global produce publication and the quality of the seminars was great. A key theme was the degree by which consumer marketing campaigns and engagement have gone "next level" in Asia. The context of food safety and quality for the burgeoning upper and middle class is incredibly heightened compared to mature markets. One example we saw was from a Chinese raspberry supplier showing the plants at point of sale in mini green houses and the fruit presented in test tubes. The inference being: "these raspberries are grown in pristine lab-like conditions and therefore they are safe to eat!"
In contrast the marketing from NZ and Australia produce leverages the premium national brand emphasised by a Chinese distributor who said Chinese consumers perceive NZ as the cleanest place on earth. See here the marketing from Mission produce supplied from NZ Avanza Avocados. The inference being: "these avocados are grown in pristine natural conditions and therefore they are safe and delicious to eat". This was re-enforced in a Cherry seminar where it was explained NZ and Australian cherries sell at 5 times the price of Chilean cherries.
However where there are increased margins on fruit the temptation to label counterfeit fruit is a growing problem underlined when visiting a Hong Kong central market. We saw fruit was marketed in our customers case but later confirmed as not being their fruit; they didn't supply that variety. Whilst it was pleasing that the cases of our customers contained labels generated from our software enabling trace-ability to grower area; where fruit margins are high, it seems the demand for fruit piece or consumer package level provenance is becoming a priority in the race for consumer engagement.
Rugby World Cup!
In new Zealand we tend to be the masters of understatement. We think our fresh produce is "quite good" (translation: "awesome!") and so it goes with rugby. We think we're "not bad" at rugby. Underneath that understated exterior hides a deep passion.....and a competitive nature.
Join us kiwis in our Radfords world cup Super Bru competition. Is your rugby team in with a shot? Come and kick off the Rugby World Cup 2019 with the Radfords team on the Superbru app. It's simple, make your score predictions before each game, and watch the scoreboard do the rest! Watch the information video here: Radfords superbru.
If you would like to join our Team Radfords on Superbru follow this link, Radfords SuperBru.