Wild Blueberry Association handpicks its demos

Wild is better than cultivated, says a new campaign targeting health-focussed shoppers, bakers and dietitians.

The Wild Blueberry Association of North America (WBANA) is rolling out its Canadian campaign to coincide with the fruit harvest commencing in August, Wild Blueberry Month, touting the health and taste qualities of the fruit. In a series of event sponsorships, trade show advertising, as well as ad placements in health and grocery magazines, Maine-headquartered WBANA wants consumers and distributors to become aware of the superior advantages of wild versus cultivated berries, says Neri Vautour, executive director of the WBANA.

Those advantages, according to the WBANA, are that they maintain their taste after baking and have more anti-aging antioxidants. ‘We also wanted to let consumers know that wild blueberries are available year-round in the frozen food section,’ Vautour tells MiC.

While advertising in grocery and health magazines is an important component of the campaign, to reach bakers, sponsorship of events is also key – WBANA will be present at events like Toronto Taste , Thrill of the Grill (Deerhurst resort in Muskoka) and it was one of the sponsors for the Dietitians of Canada conference in Charlottetown in June. ‘We feel that it’s important for the dietitians to get the information about the benefits of wild blueberries since they are in direct contact with people that are looking for this information,’ says Vautour.

However, because WBANA’s producers only grow wild blueberries in the barrens of Quebec, Atlantic Canada and Maine, and there is a chance that the campaign may get ahead of itself. ‘The challenge will be to make sure that we have enough fruit for the market given the strange weather that we have been experiencing,’ Vautour explains. Marketing and PR in Canada are handled by The Siren Group in Toronto, and PR in Quebec by Massy-Forget of Montreal. The global campaign was created by Swardlick Marketing Group of Portland, Maine.