Minneapolis-based adver­tis­ing agency Colle + McVoy and its pub­lic rela­tions part­ner Exponent PR have won the 1.2 mil­lion euro ($1.7 mil­lion) con­tract to pro­mote olive oil and olive con­sump­tion in the U.S. and Canada in 2011 – 2012.

The International Olive Council, which will fund and con­trol the cam­paign, announced the deci­sion today (Wednesday).

An IOC spokesper­son said that hav­ing reviewed the six appli­ca­tions made last month, its Tenders Evaluation Committee had pro­posed Exponent PR from three final­ists.

The agen­cy’s past work includes cam­paigns for the North American Olive Oil Association. Tom Lindell, man­ag­ing direc­tor of Exponent, told Olive Oil Times today that his team, pleased to learn of their suc­cess­ful bid, was already prepar­ing to hit the ground run­ning.

The IOC wants to launch its 18-month generic cam­paign dur­ing the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade’s Fancy Food Show, to be held in Washington this sum­mer. Promotional ini­tia­tives are expected to focus on the retail level, where research has indi­cated it is eas­ier to influ­ence buy­ing deci­sions.

In its ten­der infor­ma­tion, the IOC said that the cam­paign should empha­size that olive oil and table olives are healthy prod­ucts that can be used raw or cooked to fla­vor many kinds of food, not just Mediterranean cui­sine. And it wants to edu­cate con­sumers on value, say­ing that the gen­eral mes­sage on the dis­tinc­tive fea­tures of olive oil and table olives “should be aimed at jus­ti­fy­ing the price of the prod­uct.”

After Europe, North America is the world’s biggest con­sumer of table olives and olive oil. The IOC intends the cam­paign to focus on secur­ing greater vol­ume pur­chases from exist­ing con­sumers there in the short-medium term, and in the longer term to attract new con­sumers. It expects to see U.S. imports increase sig­nif­i­cantly over the next 3 – 5 years.

In other IOC ten­ders, Deloitte was selected to con­duct an 80,000 euro ($115,000) mar­ket study in Brazil, ahead of a later pro­mo­tional cam­paign there. The IOC wants the result­ing report, due October 17, to cover issues includ­ing the type of con­sumers, mar­ket sup­ply in the last decade, details of sup­pli­ers, analy­sis of con­sumer price trends and also of cus­toms duties and tech­ni­cal bar­ri­ers, and a review of the fraud sit­u­a­tion involv­ing olives and olive oil.

This week the IOC also called for ten­ders for mar­ket research on con­sump­tion of table olives and olive oil in Australia, Japan and South Korea. Tenders must be sub­mit­ted no later than July 21 and the suc­cess­ful appli­cants must sub­mit their research by January 4. The bud­gets are: Australia:€85 000 ($122 375), Japan €80 000 ($115,176), and South Korea €75 000 ($107,980).

All three stud­ies must address issues such as demand and mar­ket sup­ply in the last decade, and con­sumer types, but the Australian one must also eval­u­ate the coun­try’s likely olive oil and table olive pro­duc­tion and export trends in the next 10 – 15 years, and appraise its export capa­bil­i­ties.


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