Each month we’ll be featuring a brand that stands out among the pack for its savvy marketing and effective storytelling. And as the first post in this new series, I’m excited to highlight a very cool and unique branded product, one that I have admired for some time– Love Beets.
Who knew that by adding flavor and highly-creative packaging that beets could rise not only rise to prominence in the produce department but also become a cool snack?
But for husband and wife team, Guy and Katherine Shropshire, that’s just what happened. The couple, originally from England, purchased a small beet factory with hopes of sharing a family favorite. In order to attract a younger audience, they experimented with flavorful marinated recipes. In 2010, they brought their marinated beet product to America and were encouraged by an “overwhelming positive” response during the Fancy Foods Show. That’s when they moved to Philadelphia and the “beet” began.
In 2014, they launched a fun and colorful brand image with new packaging design and website. Over time, resealable packaging was implemented to appeal to shoppers looking for convenience while at the same time doubling shelf-life (from 18 – 36 days) for the ready-to-eat beet products. As the company evolved and demand increased, they transitioned from a UK-based operation into a USA growing and production facility transforming a former Kodak warehouse in Rochester, New York into a 100,000 square foot beet factory.
But it’s the range of unique flavors, likeability, visual appeal and interactive nature, that draws Love Beets to consumers. With taste profiles such as Honey & Ginger, Sweet Chili, Mild Vinegar and White Wine and Balsamic – how can these beets go wrong? Their tag line “Stay true to your roots,” refers to the company’s philosophy of healthy eating, local sourcing, eco-friendly practices with an emphasis on sustainability. The company’s Facebook page, with 112K likes, is highly engaging using bright, colorful photography, innovative recipes and how-to videos that enhance the overall brand image and taste appeal.
A range of new products have been added to increase beet exposure with shredded product for salads, salsa, cooked beets, powder and juices. At their plant in Rochester, 51 local residents have been hired and the company plans to increase the workforce to 140.
In addition, the company recently welcomed two new individuals to their team – founder of Rosemont Farms, Andrew Schwartz, and Joe McGuire of C.H. Robinson, Ready Pac Foods, Inc., and Dole Fresh Vegetables, Inc. According to Love Beet’s blog, “Their energy and enthusiasm about Love Beets is a wonderful shot of adrenaline to our already-ambitious team.”
Today, Love Beets can be found in over 7,500 stores in the US and Canada. In 2017, the company received a Supplier Excellence Award from Sysco. In 2018, their Honey + Vinegar Golden Beets product was awarded as a new product category winner in the Viva Fresh’s Gateway to Innovation Awards while their Beet Salsa was a runner up finalist in the value-added category.
Love Beets is a clear example of a company that elevated beets to and entirely new and popular level by making smart decisions when it came to packaging, unique flavor profiles and a fun brand image that appeals to a highly targeted, younger audience.
Tell us what brands you admire? Look for more success story examples as we spotlight a brand each month.