Pick n Pay, southern African retailer

‘Cobranding was a conscious decision’

Thanks to a unique partnership between Pick n Pay and Rijk Zwaan, the African supermarket chain’s lettuce category has achieved double-digit growth. “Our customers love this upgrade,” says Liz van Niekerk, Head of Produce and Horticulture for the retailer.

Social conscious

Pick n Pay has more than 1,600 stores across seven countries in southern Africa. The supermarket chain offers everything a shopper could need – food, clothes and many other products – with a focus on affordable prices. Pick n Pay demonstrates a genuine commitment to consumer welfare and societal issues. This strong social conscience forms a solid foundation for outstanding customer service, innovation and growth. One way the retailer drives growth is through intensive collaboration with partners such as Rijk Zwaan. Last year, after analysing the lettuce, bell pepper and cucumber categories, the Rijk Zwaan team recommended a number of updates to the product range in line with Pick n Pay’s strategic objectives.

Online and offline campaign

Rijk Zwaan and Pick n Pay implemented the changes in late 2018, to coincide with the summer period. The fresh produce category was updated and the partners launched a joint marketing campaign to promote the new premium products. “We intensively promoted Salanova®, Sweet Palermo® and snack cucumbers during that time, both online and offline,” explains Van Niekerk.

For example, the partners shared one another’s recipes, photos and information on Salanova.com, the Love My Salad platform, Pick n Pay’s Facebook page (which has 1.9 million followers) and in the food magazine called Fresh Living. An extra initiative was rolled out in stores in Cape Town and Johannesburg, where various colours of Salanova® were promoted in special packaging including a free cutter tool.

Taking the category to the next level

The results of this multi-faceted campaign speak for themselves. Pick n Pay has achieved sustained growth in the full-head lettuce, fresh-cut lettuce, bell pepper and cucumber categories, according to Van Niekerk. “It was fantastic to see the results of the Pick n Pay and Rijk Zwaan partnership landing into stores for the summer. The feedback from our customers has been really positive. They are loving the upgrades! Co-branding was a conscious decision because it’s very strong and adds great authority to the range. This new approach is taking our fresh produce category to the next level. We really value our partnership with Rijk Zwaan.” Pick n Pay plans to continue upgrading its fresh produce range, with the tomato category one of the next on the list.

Interested to learn more about collaboration opportunities? Read more: https://www.rijkzwaan.com/partnerships