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Brazilian supermarket Zona Sul is going a step further than most retailers to prove the freshness of its produce – they’ve placed an actual mini “fresh vegetable garden” in a Rio store, so that customers can pick their vegetables right out of the ground.

The fresh Garden initiative, by WMcCann in Rio, offers customers a selection of vegetables and herbs, including lettuce, basil, peppers and spring onions, grown in beds. Signs on the shelves said: “When serving it at home you may proudly say: “I picked it,” or “We plant and take care of it. You only need to pick it.”

The agency claims the campaign has resulted in an 18% increase in vegetables sales, and a 30% uplift in customer preference for Zona Sul’s vegetable section. The projects success means Zona Sul plans to roll their fresh Garden out to other stores.

“They were placed there in a very delicate process,” says Nicolás Romanó, creative director at WMcCann, the agency that came up with the campaign for the store, called Zona Sul. “We couldn’t grow them in-store to make sure they were all top quality, so we figured out the logistics of how to transport and maintain them displayed in the store.”

The campaign was designed to let customers understand the store’s commitment to sustainability and the quality of the food. “It was the perfect way to make customers realise that veggies there are really, really fresh,” says Romanó.

The growing consumer demand for healthier food is directly reflected in the offering of fresh, sustainable and local products. “That’s a simple and innovative solution that helps us promote how engaged we are with sustainable practices while creating a great consumer experience and awareness of the benefits of a fresh and healthy food diet,” says Pietrangelo Leta, commercial director of Zona Sul.

We believe this new approach to supermarket shopping is fun and engaging and allows customers to trust products and their health benefits. We’ll be looking forward to seeing how this influences other supermarket brands and whether it encourages them to follow suit.

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