The National Watermelon Promotion Board has named winners in its annual Retail Merchandising Contest which garnered 220 entries from various retail chains, independent retailers and commissaries throughout the U.S. and Canada. This year’s iteration of the contest — the 12th since its’ inception — was reimagined to incorporate social media and marketing efforts in addition to in-store displays. The contest started in July to honor National Watermelon Month and ran throughout the month of August to encourage and identify retailers who are showcasing watermelon’s benefits including health, value and versatility.
Grand prize winner Powell's Supermarket's display.
Marketing efforts considered in judging included category visibility, point-of-sale materials, good visual merchandising, messaging nutritional benefits, recipes and/or selection education and use of print, online and/or digital platforms. This year’s winners used mixed marketing tactics ranging from time-lapsed social posts to eye-catching in-store displays to virtual store tours.
This year’s winners included:
- Grand Prize: Powell’s Supermarket - Bay Roberts NL, Canada
- Second Place – Two winners: Chuck’s Produce & Street Market Stores – Salmon Creek and Mill Plain locations - Vancouver, WA
- Third Place: Schnuck’s Hampton Village - St. Louis, MO
- Honorable Mentions: Fort Sam Houston - San Antonio, TX, Mandela Grocery Cooperative - Oakland, CA, Lowes Food Store #245 - Hickory, NC, United Grocery Outlet #30 – Brevard, NC
“The entries we received this year went above and beyond. Powell’s Supermarket – this year’s grand prize winner — really explored every avenue of promotion and merchandising, using in-store optics and collateral materials and extending health messaging online and in their social media,” said Juliemar Rosado, Director of Retail and International Marketing for the NWPB. “It was great to see all the unique spins on merchandising across the stores.”
Honorable mention: Lowes Food Store #245.
“At Powell’s Supermarket, we pride ourselves in being fresh, friendly and local and it was a tremendous amount of fun to get creative with fresh watermelon — a customer favorite. Our team not only put together an eye-catching watermelon display, but we included fun and educational information to accompany it both in store and online as well. We are thrilled to be recognized as first place winners — but perhaps the biggest prize of all was watching how this display put a smile on our customer’s faces as they entered our store,” said Valerie Morgan, Public Relations and Marketing Coordinator.
More than $10,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded to winners, including $5,000 for Powell’s Supermarket as the grand prize for the winner. The second place winners split $2,500, third place will receive $1,000 and each of the four honorable mentions will receive $500.
Chuck’s Produce & Street Market Stores - Salmon Creek.
A complete list of the winning displays can be found here