New York Apple Association’s Cynthia Haskins Details The Big Flavor Campaign for Fall
NEW YORK - The thick of summer is upon us, but my thoughts are on the cooler weather awaiting me this autumn. Another sweet treat on the way is New York Apple Association’s (NYAA) new campaign this fall, The Big Flavor. I got in touch with Cynthia Haskins of NYAA to learn more about this flavorful campaign.
“We are experiencing warm summer days that are perfect for bringing out the flavor of apples from New York,” says Cynthia, President and Chief Executive Officer. “We are looking at nearly 28 million bushels in production for the upcoming fall harvest.”
Apple harvest begins in the Hudson Valley and immediate surrounding areas in mid-August, followed by Central and Western New York a week or two later, with Northeastern New York coming up soon after.
Early season varieties start in August with Ginger Gold and Paula Red, followed by Jonamac and Zestar!®. Other varieties like McIntosh, Gala, Honeycrisp, Cortland, Macoun, Jonagold, and Empire are typically ready sometime in early September through October depending on the geographical location. Varieties like Red Delicious, Crispin, Golden Delicious, Fuji, Cameo, Rome, and Braeburn are soon to follow.
Newer varieties like SnapDragon®, RubyFrost®, SweeTango®, Evercrisp®, and WildTwist® have a distinct profile that shoppers continue to seek out. When consumers reach for their favorite classic apples, they are often willing to try a new or different variety—which quickly becomes another favorite, shares Cynthia. SweeTango apples are ready to harvest in September, and SnapDragon and Evercrisp apple varieties will be harvested from late September to October.
“Flavor is a primary driver for category success, and NYAA provides multiple creative strategies to build consumer awareness,” continues Cynthia. “Social media helps the Association inform shoppers of the different varieties and their flavor profiles. Our apple growers continuously evolve their operations to stay current and provide nutritious varieties, so we’ll be introducing reimagined apple pairings to bring the familiarity of the classics together with unique pairings for an enjoyable and delicious experience.”
To make autumn the best apple-eating season, NYAA created 19 new appetizers that consumers would love while enjoying a classic or new apple variety. In addition, the Association will launch a new series of short videos and images that will hit media platforms to tell the story of an apple’s journey from family-owned orchards to retail shelves.
“From apple plantings to harvest, we want to tell the stories of our growers’ dedication and passion for upholding sustainability and growing great-tasting apples. Our growers work with Mother Nature to meet the demand for flavor, and we invite our retail partners to drive a more sustainable future and reduce freight costs at the same time by sourcing closer to the orchards. New York growers are close to their packinghouses and major U.S. population centers, reducing fuel costs and emissions in every load,” shares Haskins.
Consumers want to know where and how their food is produced, and these videos are just the ticket.
Fall will also see NYAA flexing its marketing strategy strength, as the Association is lining up promotional activities with retailers now. Retail partners will find content for its online and in-store marketing, as well as eye-catching packaging that stands out in the produce department. Convenient, high-graphic poly totes, poly bags, and pouches designed to encourage grab-and-go purchases will make for great fall-time celebrations around these fresh-picked apples. Geo-targeting partnerships will continue to play a substantial role as NYAA rolls out its Big on Flavor campaign.
Take a bite of the perfect apples for your fall orders, and keep an eye out for our apple logo to bring you more insights into our industry’s growers.