New Zealand’s largest supplier of green kiwifruit into the Australian market is investing heavily in customer support this season and now has a dedicated sales team in almost every state.

NutriKiwi, who control half of all green kiwifruit available to be shipped across the Tasman, now have people on the ground in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia.

NutriKiwi General Manager Michael Leach says the extra investment is part of an on-going support package designed to help independent fruit and vegetable retailers maximise their kiwifruit sales in what will be a lower volume season.

“Environmental factors have had a big impact on this year’s kiwifruit crop in New Zealand,” he explains. “Volume is down around 25 per cent and smaller-sized fruit that is traditionally used in pre-packs is all but non-existent this season.

But despite the lower volume, Leach says average fruit size is currently a 25/27 – “about the size of my palm which is the biggest we’ve had for many years”.

“NutriKiwi’s Point of Sale displays, which are themed ‘Kiwis Aussies Love’, coupled with our on-the-ground merchandising team, will ensure we provide focused customer support. This will help our Australian retail partners create in-store theatre to make it a fun and enjoyable consumer experience.”

Leach says no other New Zealand kiwifruit company has a sales team on the ground in Australia to this extent. “NutriKiwi’s key focus is to provide retailers with the best possible customer support and Class A quality fruit to on-sell to their customers.”

NutriKiwi’s new in-store signage features different taglines including “It’s the kiwi Aussie’s love” and “Daily nutrition made easy”. Corflute banners ranging from A4 to 1.2m wide are available, along with NutriKiwi strip advertising to enclose the actual fruit display.

“They look terrific and certainly help draw the consumer’s eye. Our sales team will work with all NutriKiwi stockists to ensure their green kiwifruit section looks appealing to help drive growth and sales across the board.”

NutriKiwi’s 2017 marketing push continues on from the previous season’s activity and will see it continue to engage directly with Australian consumers at various events such as the recent World Sport Schools Netball and Rugby carnival on the Gold Coast. The event saw teams and families from around Australia descend on Runaway Bay for rugby and the Southport Carrara Complex for netball. Green kiwifruit samples were handed out on the side-lines throughout both tournaments.

“NutriKiwi prides itself on its continued interaction with Australian consumers and ensuring as many people as possible get to taste our Class A quality fruit,” Leach says.

“We’re confident that once consumers try NutriKiwi fruit they will specifically seek out our brand in store because they know they’ll always get a top quality product.”

NutriKiwi ships green kiwifruit to Australia from May until November each year.

As published on Friday 11th August 2017