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Xavier Equihua, CEO World Avocado Organsation
"We are promoting avocados in the big European supermarkets this spring"
There is no avoiding avocados these days. The month of November was even named avocado month by the World Avocado Organisation with Amsterdam as the capital of the event. Although November isn't over yet, there are already plans for a new European promotion campaign in the spring of 2018 and tastings will be central.
A cookbook especially for avocados is one of the methods of promotion.
"We have now been working on the avocado month for a few weeks and it has all been going well so far," says Xavier Equihua, CEO World Avocado Organisation. Their goal is to get consumers to eat avocados, something that has been going well in the Netherlands according to Xavier, although this isn't the case across Europe. "Although we have named November the avocado month, there will be another promotion campaign centred around the avocado in the spring. We will do this in collaboration with the large European supermarket chains."
The Netherlands as an epicentre
The Netherlands, the United Kingdom and France are the countries in which the avocado is doing best according to Xavier. Although those three countries are the epicentre of avocado, there are countries where promotion could still be of use. "They like good food in Italy, but still don't eat many avocados," he continues. "This is also the case in Greece. In a country like Poland, where you might think they'd eat less avocados, they love the product. Japan and China are also getting to know the avocado better. It's important to introduce people to the avocados. This has gone well in the Netherlands, the demand for avocados there rises around 20 percent annually."
Besides various avocado projects and even an avocado tram for our capital, there are plans to further promote the avocado in the spring of 2018 according to Xavier. "At the moment there are eight countries participating in the campaign and this will be ten next year," he says. "In collaboration with the big European supermarket chains we are starting a promotion campaign to have the customers taste avocados in places like Albert Heijn, Carrefour and Tesco. I think the future of avocados is bright."
As well as tastings, the World Avocado Organisation is also investing in advertising on iconic transport in various European cities. "In the Netherlands and Austria we are using trams, whilst we use the famous taxis and buses in the UK," says Xavier. "It is a bigger challenge to start a promotion campaign in Europe than it is in the United States. There are different languages and cultures in Europe, which is less the case in the United States.
The avocado tram in Amsterdam in November.
According to the CEO there is also a difference in consumption between the American and Europeans. Because there are a lot of Mexican in the US, more avocados are eaten. "There are a lot of Mexicans in the United States who have been eating avocados for a long time," says Xavier. "They eat 1.1 billion kilos of avocado every year in the US, whilst Europe consumes half a billion kilos. People in the United States are more likely to come across the avocado due to the Mexican population in the US. In Europe there are countries where avocados aren't eaten yet. We want to change that with this campaign."
For more information:
World Avocado Organization
717 D Street, NW Suite 310
Washington, DC 20004
T: +1 202 607-0560
Publication date: 11/23/2017
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