Marketing expert criticises 'confusing' bagged salad products

"Over-complicated and confusing" was marketing expert David Hughes' verdict on the range of bagged leafy salads on offer in British supermarkets.

"You need to think harder about how the customer might want to use the product," he said. The Imperial College London professor of food marketing was speaking at the British Leafy Salads Association conference.

He added: "(Customers) need more help deciding what to buy for what kind of meal. What do they use to prepare a meal for entertaining friends as distinct from, say, feeding the kids?" He said there should be more promotion about selling the benefit of salad products and less about price cutting.

Hughes suggested a shift in future R&D spending to focus more on developing products with improved "consumer traits" such as flavour, size and shape, rather than spending on benefits for growers such as yield or pest and disease control.

He believes the salads industry should learn from trends in the fruit sector, which is developing "closed supply chains" involving breeders, grower groups and exclusive deals with individual retail companies.

"Power is polarising towards the owners of the genetics and to the retailers. If you don't own the genetics or the brand, how do you make yourself important in the supply chain?" he asked.


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Horticulture education update - staying on course

Horticulture education update - staying on course

Raised levels of investment in horticulture education and increased student take-up is welcome news for the industry, says Rachel Anderson.

How will reduced apple and pear harvests hit the industry?

How will reduced apple and pear harvests hit the industry?

This spring, many top-fruit growers in the UK and across Europe were dismayed to discover that swathes of their orchards had been hit by frost.

How should fruit growers prepare for water abstraction reform?

How should fruit growers prepare for water abstraction reform?

Upcoming reforms to water abstraction licensing will for the first time cap the amount of water that fruit growers can take for trickle irrigation.