SHOPTOCOOK: CINCO DE MAYO HOT
BUFFALO, N.Y. — Recipe searches on the 700 ShoptoCook kiosks in 250 supermarket locations last week indicated that Cinco de Mayo presents a big opportunity for retailers to promote more than tortilla chips and salsa. Views of tortilla lasagna, pork fajitas and other Hispanic-related protein recipes got heavy hits and were printed out by customers at the kiosks, ShoptoCook principal Jan Beurskens told SN. “Ethnic holidays are being seen more and more as a time for everybody to celebrate,” she said. For a 12-day period leading up to Cinco de Mayo, ShoptoCook adds a Cinco de Mayo button and has seen hits on the special, limited-edition page grow each year. This year, same-store figures at one grocery store show a 225% increase in activity on that button. While a number of variables could have spurred such an increase, the fact is that across the system, recipes for Cinco de Mayo-related entrees got a lot of activity. While nachos and guacamole remained most popular, they were followed closely by tortilla lasagna, Mexican rice and certified Angus beef flank steak fajitas. “The diversity in recipes printed shows us that retailers can use this opportunity to heavily promote proteins,” Beurskens said. The next recipe-heavy holiday coming up is the Fourth of July, she said. Last year, the top ShoptoCook recipe printed leading up to Independence Day was a recipe for “Star Spangled Burgers.”
WEIS RAISES FUNDS FOR HOSPITAL
SUNBURY, Pa. — In partnership with Glendale, N.Y.-based deli supplier Hansel 'n Gretel, Weis Markets here has kicked off its 22nd annual fund-raiser to benefit a local children's hospital. Beginning May 14, the drive will continue through May 27, during which a portion of the money customers spend for specified Hansel 'n Gretel meats in Weis Markets' delis will benefit pediatric services at the Janet Weis Children's Hospital at Geisinger Medical Center through the Children's Miracle Network. The Weis Healthy Deli items included in the promotion are deluxe cooked ham, honey turkey breast, baked Virginia ham and tavern ham. Hansel 'n Gretel has provided large point-of-sale signs for the 154-unit grocery chain's deli department that tell customers which products are involved in the fund-raiser. On May 30, Wayne Williamson, Hansel 'n Gretel's vice president, sales and marketing, accompanied by a Weis official, will present a check to officials at the Danville, Pa., hospital. The event will be covered by a local network affiliate television station. Since 1988, Hansel 'n Gretel, in partnership with Weis, has raised more than $700,000, a children's hospital spokeswoman told SN.
PBH ANNOUNCES WEBINAR SERIES
WILMINGTON, Del. — The Produce for Better Health Foundation has announced a series of Web seminars that will explain its proposal for a national promotion board to market fruits and vegetables. PBH has said that its goal for the program is to increase fruit and vegetable consumption in the U.S. with the help of a comprehensive marketing, communications and education effort focused on health. The board would be funded by assessments on produce growers and importers, and would be similar to organizations like the Beef Checkoff program, which develops retail promotions via the National Cattlemen's Beef Association. Webinars are scheduled on June 10, July 8, Aug. 13 and Sept. 2, all beginning at 2 p.m. ET. Interested parties can find out more about the proposal at www.fvcampaign.org, and can register by contacting PBH executive assistant Sharese Alston at [email protected].